Sunday, August 30, 2009

They Call London Home...

After spending the day at Windsor, we headed back to London, freshened up at our B&B, and then took the "tube" to Andrew and Katie's flat on a close (the street is "closed" on one end to traffic, thus it is a "close" and not a street or avenue). We enjoyed the challenge of finding our way around the city, armed with a tube map, and Oyster Cards, which are rechargeable (topped off) plastic cards that allow us to swiftly move in and out, and back and forth underground. The system is more like a maze, and if a line is closed due to construction...look out! Finding another option is not so easy. If you don't go with the flow, you might find yourself trampled, or worse yet, left behind on the platform as the double doors close. And then there's the sign painted in yellow at your feet that reminds you to "mind the gap" between you and the approaching train, lest you be swept under!
So, we took the Bakerloo line from Euston Station to Belsize Park, then (since the station was 200-300 feet below ground) we took an elevator up to street level, and walked the 3 blocks to their 3rd floor flat. It was small, but artfully decorated, and we enjoyed our expertly prepared meal along with another American couple who call London their home.
We chatted about how different life is "across the pond", but were impressed with how comfortable they have made themselves in this chic (but often chaotic) city, with a history that goes back thousands of years before our United States became a nation.
It's so good to finally see Katie and Andrew in their first home. As we left, Katie waved to us from their livingroom...look closely, and you can see her at the window.
We look forward to exploring this great city together!

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