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Monday, December 29, 2008

December 27, From Paris to London

One of my daughters made us all laugh when their Daddy bent over to pick something up, and said, "I see London, I see France, I see Daddy's underpants". It was perfect timing and so funny considering our travel itinerary. I'm still laughing about it.

Anyway, on December 27 our family would sojourn yet again, this time to London for 4 nights. We took the Chunnel, otherwise known as the Eurostar, as our mode of transportation. I imagined a very modern train that would be under water for the majority of time. I was surprised to learn that the train was not exceedingly modern, although it was very nice and clean. And we were above ground as long, if not longer, than underground. Our ears popped as we descended in through the tunnel. The total train ride was just about 2 hours, a very quick ride from Paris to London. The benefit of taking the Eurostar as opposed to flying is you are right in London when you arrive, and can easily get connect to the Underground, London's metro, to your destination. We rode first class, but had some difficulty with our tickets. It turned out our original train was cancelled, and they placed us on another train which meant we were not sitting together. We scrambled and tried to ask the conductor for assistance, but there were not much help to us or other passengers and families who had the same issue. So we just made do with our situation and were glad we were on the same train and that it was a short ride.

We arrived in St. Pancras, which is across from Kings Cross. For Harry Potter fans, which all 3 of my daughters are, we had to go there immediately to see track 9 3/4, the famous spot where Harry meets up with Ron Weasley for the first time and magically goes through the column separating tracks 9 and 10. Todya there is a famous spot for taking photos where a trolley appears to be going through the wall (see photo above). The girls all had their chance to get a photo there.

We took the underground to our hotel which is in a section of London called Maida Vale (pronounced May-Da Vayel). It is near Abbey Road, where the Beatles have a famous photo walking along that road. Today many recording artists still produce work in that studio. For our first evening there, we found a double decker that took us all around town very conveniently, picking us up near the front of our hotel and dropping us off there too. But first we were able to meet up with friends from 15 years ago when we lived in Amsterdam. We went to a very scrumptious Iranian restaurant that served all sorts of kabobs and we were very satiated. It was a good way to end our day, and prepare us for the next day, Harrods biggest sale of the year!

Tomorrow: Harrods packed house

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