One of us was up at 7:00, working over breakfast while the other finished her 12 hours of beauty rest. Needless to say we had a late start to the day. Eventually we left the hotel. Making the decision to take the London Underground vs walking and telling Maggie it was for the experience and not because I was hurting from all the walking we did yesterday, honest! From the train we boarded a boat to take us up the Thames for a morning, now approaching afternoon, in Greenwich. The time on the water was a great way to see the London’s sites from a totally different prospective. At one point a group of Japanese tourist boarded and Maggie was able to experience the stereotypical Japanese tourist and them to Americans!
We discovered Greenwich is a beautiful and historic area full of green grass and a refreshment from the city. We were met by the Cutty Sark, the last surviving tea clipper as we left the boat dock, but really it was simply a boat out of the water.
We worked our way through the small streets of the town and eventually found a spot in the shade on the lawn of the National Maritime Museum reviewing our plan of attack for the day with 100s of school kids running all around. Maggie found a great spot to sit on some of the impressive collection of Britain’s seafaring history.
The highlight was the Royal Observatory with views over the river Thames towards London’s Canary Wharf. We had fun taking pictures on the Meridian line and hopping over it. The only disappointing aspect was all of this required we walk up and back down a large hill. We rewarded our efforts with lunch outside the Greenwich Tavern before discovering a book store on our way back to the boat. The stop at the book store initial sounded like a good Idea. Maggie sold it as a chance for me to sit and have a cup of coffee and check my work e-mails. I did not realize this was not a short stop as eventually after my coffee and cleaning up my e-mails, I had to go in search of her and help her make a decision between about 20 books. She settled on one – It All in your Head. It was now about 4:00 and we had limited time to hit our next stop the London Tower.
We arrived at the Tower, having pre booked our tickets and found we only had an hour until they closed. The women suggested it would take well over two hours and we should consider coming back another day. Maggie and I looked at each other and said to one another, one hour should be fine and set off as fast as we could. We covered every room from the White Tower to the room with the Crown Jewels of England, the inner and outer wards and even the top of the walls themselves. The only thing that slowed us down was when someone yelled Mr. Hall… As we turned we saw Joe Byrnes and his 3 boys – It’s a small world.
We were herded out of the tower and crossed the River Themes via “The Tower Bridge” (But we still called it London Bridge); and yes, we did sing “London bridge is falling down, falling down, falling down…”
After a short walk on the Queens Walk way along the river, we were on the Underground again for the experience not to save walking. Our destination was the London Eye… With fast passes in hand we skipped the line and made the 30 minute ride, mesmerized by the view and starting to think about dinner.
It was a long walk back to Piccadilly, both with sore feet. It was about 8:00 when we finally made it to the room and 10:00 when we called it a night and after a nice dinner in a little square behind our hotel.