Sunday, 15 July 2018

London, England (Hampton by Hilton, London Dockland)

Was up early this morning to catch the train to Milton Keynes to visit with Csabi. While the trip from London to Milton Keynes is only 30 minutes, it will take me almost 60 minutes to get from this hotel to Euston Station where the train departs from London.

I gave myself two hours to get to Milton Keynes. Actually, with all the transfers it didn’t seem like it took that long. Important to have a good idea where you’re going and follow the directions. All the connections were on time and I was there before 10:00 to meet Csabi. I actually ended up waiting for him. We were supposed to meet last Tuesday when I arrived in London but my flight was delayed and we had to cancel.

Was good to see Csabi again. He reminded me that it has been seven months since we last saw each other. We’ve both been traveling and just haven’t ended up in the same country – except he was in the U.S. just before I arrived, in fact his plane left on the day my plane arrived in Baltimore.

We talked for quite a while in a Costa Coffee shop near the station then walked to a nearby restaurant. He was going in to work at 1:00 so we didn’t have much time to do much except talk and enjoy our time together. He is learning a lot about being on his own in a new country and his English is getting better each time I see him.

Before long it was time for him to be at work so we said our goodbyes. He may be living and working in a new city by the time I return in October. I’m sure we will catch up again before too long.

The journey back to London didn’t go so well. The train was packed with people because a later train was cancelled. I stood for most of the way back to London on a crowded train. By the time the train arrived in London, even with the train’s air conditioning, it was very warm in the train. The underground trains were even warmer. I was hot and exhausted by the time I arrived in my hotel room.

I realized I had been on the move for nearly eight hours and I was tired. Naturally, I took and nap and when I woke it was nearly 9:00 p.m. I went down the street from the hotel and ordered a fish and chips dinner then returned to my room.

One task that I needed to do was make more reservations for my trip to Scandinavia. I must have been tired because I accidentally booked an Airbnb for the same time period as another reservation. Lesson Learned: Make sure your travel itinerary is kept up-to-date. My planning spreadsheet was not current and I forgot that I had already booked a place to stay. Fortunately I get an almost full refund, except for the booking fee. A small price to pay for this mistake. It could have been much worse if the host had a no refund policy.

The place I found in Stockholm is going to be fantastic. The flat is on the top floor of a high-rise in central Stockholm. The positive reviews from the previous guests stated they were very impressed with the flat, and especially the views of the city.

I was still very tired and was in bed early even though I took a long nap before. I’m enjoying how quiet this hotel is. You would never know that an airport is nearby.

Tomorrow I’m visiting the church where Theodore Roosevelt married his second wife, walking to Buckingham Palace, then having afternoon tea with Prean and Viktor.

To see pictures: 
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