Chez WW in England

Chez WW in England

Slideshow Widget

Chic traveller

14 December 2010

I had visions of jetting across the Atlantic, looking terribly chic in high heel boots, wearing a swinging coat and pulling a tiny but very cute suitcase. Funny how visions never line up with reality in my world. There were other plans in store for me.

The day of our departure was very cold. After all the rushing around in Petawawa was taken care of, we hit the highway for Ottawa. There was some last minute shopping to do as well as pick up some British Pounds. Before we knew it we had dropped the Beast (our huge mini-van) off at the storage place and were at the airport. There are some airports that make it easy to kill 5 hours; Ottawa is not one of them. Our flight was not leaving until after 9 that night. Since we would be living out of our suitcase for the next month there was no chance of us zipping through the airport with a tiny suitcase. Our luggage included two regular sized suitcases, a laptop bag, 1 camera bag and my giant purse. Our goal was to travel light. Once we arrived at Heathrow we had to make our way to The Barn Hotel in Ruislip. All with no real clue of what we were doing.

By the time our flight was ready to leave I was looking a little worse for wear. A smile is said to be a woman's best accessory and my smile was firmly in place. We were about to start our adventure of living in England.

While, I looked like someone who had been dragged through a hedge backwards, there were other females on the flight who looked stunning. I was amazed. There were three Middle Eastern ladies traveling with a small child. After a flight with little to no sleep, they all looked so fresh. Hair and makeup were perfect. These ladies sure knew how to travel. I hope one day that I look as good after a transatlantic flight.

Our first real challenge once we landed in Heathrow was to get to our hotel. This may not have been such an ordeal if we had actually slept on the flight. After some debate, we took the high speed train into London's Paddington Station. Andrew had his heart set on riding the Tube. He was outvoted on that idea. Riding the Tube with all of our luggage during the morning rush hour was way more of a disaster than I was ready for. I had spent 6 days in London before when I was in high school. I knew Paddington Station and felt confident that we could get to where we needed to go. I did, however, forgot about all the stairs in the Tube stations. We each lugged a suitcase and an extra bag up more flights of stairs than I care to think about. It did make up for not having time for any recent workouts. After climbing all of those stairs, we decided to just take a taxi to the hotel. We were far too tired to be thinking straight and figuring out a complicated Tube trip. Let me make one thing clear, in case there was any wondering; I will NOT be attempting to ever climb Mount Everest. Back down all those stairs we went. We joined the hundred other people who were queuing for a taxi. The scene was complete with traffic directors and those beautiful black cabs of London. The whole experience was a little surreal and I wanted to pinch myself to make sure that I was not dreaming. Our turn eventually came and we were  able to hop in a taxi. We had no idea how much the ride would cost and really did not care. We were tired and hungry and just wanted to rest.

One of the first things we discovered was the lack of street numbers. Most places do not use a number. I never realized how important that number was until we tried to find The Barn Hotel. After a 50 pound taxi ride, we arrived at The Barn. It was beautiful sight. Now, we desperately needed sleep.

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