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Old 05-18-2008, 12:36 PM   #16
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Yeah, you're there!! Glad you were able to have Margo take the fur babies earlier than planned More please
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Old 05-18-2008, 12:54 PM   #17
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Whew! I was worried about "the boys"! Glad that worked out! I'm so excited to see you are on the ground...though I've already read about you guys in the London Eye. Great update and can't wait to read more about your adventures!!! I'm totally jealous!
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Old 05-18-2008, 01:09 PM   #18
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Glad you were able to find sitters for the "kids". Sounds like a great flight.
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Old 05-18-2008, 03:14 PM   #19
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Day 2.....

We arrived at Heathrow and made our way over the river and through the woods to the station for Heathrow Express. We were originally supposed to fly into brand new Terminal 5, but as it's not yet operational, that would have been a bit difficult! So we landed at Terminal 4, and got on a bus to take us to where we needed to be. We cleared customs and security, got our bags and took off in the direction of the Heathrow Express. Apparently, H. E. doesn't stop at Terminal 4, so we needed to take the shuttle train (think monorail at MCO) to the H.E. terminal. We boarded the train, and this is what we saw on the ground:





The British are very safety minded, and "Mind the Gap" became one of the mottos for this trip. Many of the tube stations had "Mind the Gap" on the platform, and they announced it at each and every stop in a wonderful voice!

The trip to Paddington Station was quick and we had a great time taking in the scenery.


We arrived at the station, and Steve was hungry. So we decided to stop, and have lunch. We had pasties. I had cheese and onion, Steve had lamb and mint. He wasn't totally impressed with his, but he ate most of it anyway! Mine was great!


Feeling better, we headed out toward the taxi stand where we got a taxi to the hotel.

We were spending three nights at the Royal Garden Hotel. We had booked this through the Concierge Collection with DVC, and it did not disappoint. Our room was ready, bell services took care of our luggage, and everyone was just so friendly. I took pictures of the hotel and our room. I didn't take all of these the first day, but I grouped them together.

Our room:






The view:


The front of the hotel:


The lobby:





Steve:



We checked in, and decided that the overnight flight was really beginning to get to us. I needed to call Cheryl to let her know we were alive, but I couldn't get my rented phone to work. I called her from the hotel phone, and she was really glad to hear from us as they knew our flight had been landed for about 3 hours now. We chatted for awhile, and then decided to meet up in the lobby the next morning.

We decided to take a nap, and woke up 4 hours later! We both took showers and felt MUCH better!!! I figured out the problem with the phone AFTER I read the instructions (you think I would have done that on the 7 1/2 hour flight, but no....) and we both called home.

The Royal Garden Hotel sits literally right next to Kensington Palace and Kensington Gardens, as well as Hyde Park. This seemed like a great place to start our vacation, so we walked over to Kensington Palace. The gates were closed, but we took many pictures. The grounds are absolutely beautiful.

Kensington Palace:





The guard shack:


The Gardens:





Round Pond:


Swans are protected by the queen:



A magpie:


Continued in next post....
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Old 05-18-2008, 03:19 PM   #20
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Hyde Park:












Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain:







It's a dog friendly park:


The Italian Fountains:



Poor Rudolf:


We walked the entire circumference of the park, which had to be at least 4 miles! We headed down Baywater Rd in search of dinner, and ended up at The Prince of Wales pub. This was a true English pub, and we found an empty table. We sat for a few minutes before we realized that we needed to go up to the bar, give our order, pay for it, and then it would be brought back to the table. We had a starter (wings and chips) and Steve had ribs, and I had a traditional British dish.....a hamburger! Not sure why, but that was what I was in the mood for! It was very good, and we rolled out. We were two streets from our hotel, so we walked back, and decided to call it a night!

Next..."Fancy meeting you here", The London Eye, and a few old buildings!
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Old 05-18-2008, 04:49 PM   #21
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Great updates!! Hurry back!
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Old 05-18-2008, 04:52 PM   #22
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Oh! I've just realised where you were staying! I went to university no more than a five minute walk from there. This bus...


...woke me up without fail every Saturday morning (and any days I wasn't already up for lectures) for a year at 8:30am with the words "And on your left is the Royal Albert Hall".

Glad you managed to get your cats looked after and that you made it to the airport in time!
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Old 05-18-2008, 06:06 PM   #23
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Wonderful update Sue! Now Sulley is all ready to go, especially after learning we can use our DVC points at the hotel! He'll be after me to bank them for sure!
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Old 05-18-2008, 06:25 PM   #24
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Great update Sue!! Beautiful hotel and wonderful photos!!
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Old 05-18-2008, 08:22 PM   #25
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Oh I'm just loving this. I've started to save for a 2010 trip!
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Old 05-18-2008, 08:29 PM   #26
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Great pictures Sue What a great room, and a fantastic location More please
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Old 05-18-2008, 11:06 PM   #27
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Gorgeous photos, Sue.

So glad you got the kitty situation all worked out. And I could feel my stomach starting to get in knots and I actually got nervous while you all were getting to the airport and boarding your flight!!

Can't wait to see what happens next.
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Old 05-19-2008, 01:45 AM   #28
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Great update - boy, did you guys do some walking that night! I was so glad when you called that Friday, as I was starting to get worried, knowing that you had landed three hours earlier - it was so good to speak to you guys and know you had made it safe and sound.
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Old 05-19-2008, 01:45 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoanW View Post
Oh I'm just loving this. I've started to save for a 2010 trip!
Great news - we'll look forward to seeing you then!
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Old 05-19-2008, 09:54 AM   #30
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Great update. Love all the pictures.
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