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Sept. 27-28 Toronto to London flight and London all day

 

It was Friday afternoon around 3:00 pm at work and I went 5-4-3-2-1- Yes, Europe, here I go. Many co-workers wished me a safe trip. I rushed home, took a shower, ate noodles, inspected the luggage, and off to the airport.

I took an overnight Air Canada flight from Toronto to London. After takeoff, I dumped my Toronto stress and frustration back to the ground. Praise God for that. During the flight, I watched Spider-Man and I had a solid dinner and a sunrise breakfast. Air Canada food was still good. I sat diagonal in front of a guy who had the “Get out of my face, I want my sleep” air rage. Even the flight attendant rebuked him for that.

I arrived at London in the morning. Heathrow Airport was so huge that it took me almost an hour to find the Airbus stop. The Airbus was a double decker bus and while on the upper deck, I was tossed like a toy when I stood up. After I dropped off my luggage and heavy knapsack at the Contiki Basement, my London adventure day started in full force.

It started off when I went to Buckingham Palace to watch the Changing the Guard. The music was booming even when I was in the park approaching Buckingham Palace. I managed to stand against the iron gate nearest to the band after weaving through people who wanted to leave. The soldiers marched in an organized fashion. That was a great show with a lot of pomp and pageantry.

Afterwards, I hung around Trafalgar Square, Big Ben, and the Houses of Parliament.

After lunch, I spent the afternoon at the Tower of London. I came in time for the Yeoman tour. This Yeoman (a.k.a. Beefeater) was an off colour character. He immersed us with a lot of history such as the uses of the various buildings and what happened there. I also took photos and crossed the Tower Bridge just for fun.

After 6:00 pm, I picked up my luggage and heavy knapsack from the Contiki basement and met some of my tour group. I submitted my Contiki tour documents to Kyle, our tour manager. I was aware that I talked to Linda and Tiffany. That was pre-tour bonding with each other right there.

Afterwards, I checked in at the Royal National Hotel. Since having a single room there was abolished, my roommate was Blaine. He was on the same tour as me. He came from the same country as me: another pre-tour bonding.

For the rest of the night, we did things together. We were lured to the lights of Piccadilly Circus. We had beer in a pub and talked to a local guy who looked like Prime Minister Tony Blair. Really he was an IT Consultant. We had dinner in Leicester Square where there were still a lot of lights. Since tomorrow was an early start of our fun and gruelling tour, we went back to the hotel.

On this day while I was in London, my friends in Toronto, Danny and May got married. I would like to say congratulations or goang hay in Cantonese to them. I am sure the rest of my friends were having such a great party, but I eventually partied harder while in Europe. I regret that I missed their wedding due to optimizing my 2-week time off work and 3 full weekends (including Thanksgiving long weekend) to have a doubleheader Europe and England vacation.

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