Saturday, 11 January 2020

Paddington Hilton (London, England)

Yesterday, after I woke up, ate breakfast and showered, I decided to visit Temple Church. The couple I spoke with while visiting the Great Hall in Winchester had recommended the church because if its strong ties with the Magna Carta.

Nice to have an underground station just a few floors down from where you’re staying. Took a Circle Line train to Temple and the church was a short walk from there. On the way to the church I passed by the Royal Courts of Justice building, an impressive Victorian building and one of the largest courts in Europe. Then I became interested in several churches located on the Strand and the many law offices located nearby. It was a part of London I’ve not yet explored.

I finally made it to Temple Church, founded by the Knights Templar and built in the 12th century. The church is also aligned with the Magna Carta and King John. So much history! One of the guides who met me at the door recommended a couple of books and YouTube presentations to me.

From there I bought a sandwich and walked to the river to enjoy my last full day in London before heading to Switzerland. I took a video of the river and the buildings to the south and posted on both Instagram and Facebook. I’m going to miss London.

Later that night a tooth (lower right molar in the back) started to ache. I took ibuprofen and that seemed to help with the pain. It was a little sore in this morning but I’ll have to keep an eye on it.

This morning I took the Heathrow Express to catch my flight. I arrived way too early and was at the gate two hours ahead of my flight. Though, you never know when you might run into a delay and you’ll need those two hours. In any case the flight was on time and in a little of 90 minutes I was in Zurich.

When I went through Passport Control the agent there was asking about my plans for traveling in Europe. It hadn’t crossed my mind, but it should have, since I might be extending my stay, according to Visa limitations. I made a mental note to review my travel plans for the next few months.

I took a taxi from the airport to the Hilton, which was just down the road. The driver, I guess, couldn’t speak a word of English. I had to say Hilton Hotel several times before he understood that is where I wanted to go. In any case, when I checked in I received a nice upgrade to a junior suite for my two night stay.

I have to admit, staying at Hilton properties has really worked out well while I’ve been traveling. I’ve found a good balance between staying at a Hilton or an Airbnb property. The cost savings, because I’m a Diamond member, is probably in the thousands. For example, in London during the holidays, five nights of my stays were free and my most recent stay at the Paddington Station Hilton was free. Also, just adding in the free breakfasts and sometime dinners too, would be another thousand if not more.

Tonight I had a full dinner in the executive lounge, including a main entree, a salad and a beer. Tomorrow I’ll work on sorting out more plans for my travel in Europe and take the hotel shuttle to the train station to buy my ticket for Zermatt. I have a few questions and would like to speak with a ticket agent.

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