Thursday, September 19, 2013

UK 2013 - day 8: London instead of Windsor, and why I'll hate myself forever.

Saturday, July 27, 2013
The following photograph shows three rotaries at the place where we slept this night.
Today should have been Windsor Castle day, but we stayed in London all day. We walked to the train station and bought an all day pass for £22 each. This was to avoid driving to Windsor and paying congestion charge. This was a mistake. A mistake that could have been avoided if I had stuck to my plan.

We had oyster cards with credit in them. And congestion charge is not charged on weekend. Actually congestion charge doesn't apply to Windsor. I knew all of that. The problem was that I made the mistake of listening to locals who had no idea what they were talking about.

So, what is the lesson? Don't listen to locals? No, listen to locals but TRUST YOUR home RESEARCH.  We decided to listen to the locals  and ignore our research.
I also woke us up late, because I felt bad that Dean had driven so late the night before.
What happened was that, by followings the advice of the motel lady and taking the train into London to take another train to Windsor we missed the change of the guard time.

We got to London by the time the changing of the guard should be starting. We still had to catch the train to Windsor.

Congestion charge days and places are here in this website:

So we figured we should just go to the shaving store Dean wanted to go to -Taylor of Old Bond Street - then solve our phone card problem during hours we knew the stores would be open, since nothing works in England after 5 pm. Remember - it is a weekend and business close early in the UK.

What was our phone problem?
Orange cell phone company was our problem!!!! They won't let you use your credit card if you don't live in the UK! Yes, well, first you must register the card with a UK post code. They used the store post code to register my card. But then your credit card had to be registered at the same post code. Give me a break! I am a freaking foreigner.

When we were done with everything, there was not a way to make to Windsor in time. So we stuck to London.

It was ok. I was lucky enough to find a bus route 15, which you can get at St. Paul's Cathedral. 15 and 9 are the only lines that still have those old time buses that we have pictures of. And I rode in one!

Now - for the regret of my life. There is a certain guy who lives in London, whose address I happen to know - the one address that I consider the most important address in all if the UK. I went there - and didn't knock on the door. If you're sitting there thinking, "what an idiot," believe me, I agree with you. I am writing this with tears rolling down my face. Everything in this trip could have gone wrong, but I couldn't have chickened out on that day. I did. And I think I will always hate myself for that.

Back on the station, back to the car.
On the way back to the car we got lost in the rain, and it took us forever to find our way back. I went barefoot because my heels were blistering. When we made it to our sleeping place, The Swan hotel, booked last minute to save us from Premier Inn, I took off my torn socks and washed my feet with nice hot water. Wonderful feeling!

Dinner was something called donner kebab at this Indian take-away place called Desy's. I have no idea what donner is. I don't even know if this is the right spelling.
Back to the Swan, we chatted to the owners till 2. They paid us a second round of cider - 2 freaking pints for a tiny little girl like me... and ... I'm not much of a drinker, so, but the time I walked back to my room, I was drunk. I went up the stairs seeing them move and going like, "Baby, don't let me fall back."

Expenses -
McDonald's - £4.38 (credit)
Wilkinson - £5.98(credit)
EE - £15(cash)
pret-a-manger - £10.88(credit) at the train station
Taylor of Old Bond Street - £19.95(credit)
Day travel card - £44.60(credit)
Desy's - £20 (cash) this is an approximate amount - they did not give us a receipt and I didn't log in the amount.

No comments:

Post a Comment