We escaped from New York with our sense of humour intact and some important shopping done. Jo and I both found down parkers at a good price as well as a small mountaineering stove and fuel bottle. Jo also had new walking shoes and I had a good light weigh micro-fibre shirt. Overall, not too bad.
The escape was not without its drama. Aer Lingus staged through Dublin, a smallish hub run with such incompetence that they give the impression of a great hub on a bad day. We missed our connection into London milling about with the crowd and could have missed the second flight.
Our daughter, Sarah, and her partner Mike have a small one bed room apartment close to the centre of London near St Paul’s; too close-in to park a vehicle and inside the “congestion tax” zone. As a consequence, we decided to leave the bike at the shippers and have our first week on shanks pony.
Sarah and Mike's tiny flat in London. Definately no cat swinging here!
Jo used to live in London and I have been there a number of times so this was a very relaxed time with no real pressure to see anything much. We walked a lot, relaxed and walked a lot (tube strike) and got on with sorting administration for our trip.
The GPS works fine off the bike and was useful in the back lanes (if you could get a signal).
Insurance was the biggest problem and it took several days of effort to find a company prepared to insure our foreign registered bike. When we found one, the price was enough to make the eyes water. Still, it was necessary and, in the end, done.
Bikes lead a hard life in London!
Our tourist stuff was limited to walking the Inns of court, an area of particular interest to Jo and reacquainting ourselves with Soho and some of the more interesting inner areas. The rest was rushing around in a frenzy of organising that made it clear how far we were from fully prepared when we departed home. Oh well, we will get it right next time!
Posted by Mike Hannan at September 09, 2007 03:54 PM GMT