Soooo, how's your mom?(just a random phrase we say at home sometimes to make ourselves laugh. Davie said it while on the phone to one of the boys we traveled in China with and it was hilarious b/c she sounded oh so grown up. anywho, that might just be one of those jokes that just doesn't translate)
I'M IN LONDON! Yay! I have internet access! Yay yay! I've been up for about a bazillion hours straight...no exaggeration. Ok, a little. I have fallen asleep on a plane and a train today, but not for very long either time. I cannot sleep on airplanes. It is not comfortable. It hurts my neck. None the less it was an uneventful flight which is always good. Get this, I did not talk to ONE SINGLE PERSON THE ENTIRE FLIGHT! Yes way. There weren't any friendly people near me. I guess that's because I booked seats with empty seats beside me. Go figure. I would suggest that if you enjoy chatting with total strangers on flights then put yourself in the middle of a couple of them. First lesson learned on my London trip so far.
I arrived at the Gatwick airport a little late,(well, not just me, the whole flight was late), so I missed my train(well, it wasn't my train, just a loaner)to Reading to reunite with my friends from 25 years back. I managed to call her from a pay phone using my credit card(wonder what that cost me!) and let her know that I would be an hour late. I got off the train and there she was. Sweet Val. It was just lovely(I sound so British don't I?) to see her again after all these years. She took me by the church where I performed with the Fellowship Singers all those years ago and then to her home for a wonderful visit with her sweet husband, Graham. I even got to see their boys, now grown men of course and I met their daughter in law and little Will, their grandson. It was a lovely 5 hour visit. Too short really, but it was the best we could do. Then Val put me on a train to meet Sarah. No one talks on the trains so I fell asleep off and on. Sarah met me at the Waterloo Station. She looks great and it was so good to see her. We began the journey to my hotel. Journey is the opperative word there. Keep in mind that I was lugging a 46lb suitcase behind me all the way and a smaller bag too. We needed to get from the train to the tube(subway for you non Brits)and we traveled much distance, stairs, escalators and even an elevator to get to where we needed to be. It was a very difficult journey. Did I mention that it was raining? Well, it was, which really mattered after our tube ride where we had to now walk the busy streets lugging before mentioned suitcases. Poor Sarah. I get so stressed if I don't know where I am or how to get to where I'm going. She wants to chat and I keep saying, "where do we go now" and all the while she knew right where she was going. Remember this is after little sleep.
When my hotel was in sight I sent her on her way b/c she had a "Jack the Ripper" walk/tour to go to. (Doesn't that sound fun??? "And here is where he killed his 3rd victim..."said in a lovely british accent...yuk!) So I walk up to my hotel and walk in, totally fatiqued from all the suitcase lugging and I kid you not, the young gal at the counter said, "Your room is no.11 at the top of the stairs." I said, "I have to climb stairs?" And she said, "yes" and I said, "how far?" and she said "just 3 flights"! OMGoodness!!!!!! I nearly died. I said, "you're kidding me" and she said "no, would you like some help?" and lo and behold Antonio came to my rescue. Just for the record, it was not 3 flights...but 3 floors of stairs. 5 FLIGHTS OF STAIRS and the last flight is like all curvy and really steep. By the time I got upstairs I was huffing and puffing and sweating like a pig. I think that qualifies for my workout for the day and as soon as I get my ATM card to work I'm gonna give Antonio a big tip and let him help me down the stairs with my bags tomorrow. Antonio is my bff in London now.
My room is nothing to write home about, so I won't, but the bathroom is tiny and the floor has a drain in the middle of it and the shower is connected to the rest of the bathroom and you can't turn around in it without hitting the shower curtain, ew! and I saw 2 hairs on the floor. YUCK! I HATE hair. But, the good news is that I am clean and I'm here and I'm going to go to bed momentarily because apparently Sarah is not coming back from her Jack the Ripper talk anytime soon. I'm winding down from the "Up Your Gas" pill I took earlier(thanks Cath) and so I think I can sleep now. I'm betting this is way more than even Brandi thought to hope for...so goodnight friends. Love, Jackie Sue