A Travellerspoint blog

Day 46 - Disembarkation and London

13/04/2014

Well that day is here and we are supposed to vacate the cabin by 8.30am. Breakfast is being served but not all morning like it normally is. So we head up for something to eat. Then back to the cabin to collect our things then we head to the Palladium which is our designated disembarkation lounge. Our time slot is 10.30 to 10.45 am but the announcements indicate that they are ahead of schedule and we can leave when we like. So after a few internet usage minutes we pack up and start the last walk off the ship. It turns out to be a slower walk than expected when a couple with walking issues end up in front of us on the gangway. We are in no hurry so we really don't mind.

We arrive in the warehouse where all the bags are laid out, Christine's was easy to spot but we could not see Kay's. One of the attendants came over and asked if we were missing a bag, then explained that when what ended up being Kay's bag arrived the zipper was broken. They pushed things back in and strapped it. Kay got a trolley for her bags so she was able to pick up the broken bag and put it on the trolley rather than wheeling it. We proceeded outside and joined the very long queue for taxis. When we finally reached the top of the queue, we jumped in the taxi after the driver helped to get our bags on board. We asked about getting him to drive us to London but he said it would be too much due to the traffic delays. The London marathon is being run today!! So we just got him to drop us at the bus stop, after a diversion to a store where Kay could buy a new suitcase. This took a bit longer than expected as the shop was opening late, being a Sunday.

We arrived at the bus station and the driver put our things under a little bus shelter just outside the terminal. He thought this would be easier for Kay to move her clothes around. She was able to move some so she could fix and close the broken zipper. She then realised that her third backpack was missing, so she headed back to the cruise terminal while Christine got bus tickets and watched the luggage inside the bus terminal.

Finally at 12.30 we were on our way to London, we were a little concerned about the timing and the delays the marathon might cause as we were booked on the Jack the Ripper tour that night. This didn't stop us both from having a little nap on the bus, so we missed a lot of the countryside views. We arrived in London with few delays, and quickly managed to get a taxi to take us to the Strand Palace Hotel. The marathon was all but over, there were still thousands of people around. The closer we got to Trafalgar Square the more people there were. It was madness but finally we were klj checked in and in the room. We decided to go for a look around and get something to eat - we aren't used to going so long without food. Hahaha.

We found a little market that was open and a few little restaurants. We got a lovely, completely organic meal and after picking up a couple of souvenirs we headed back to the room to get ready for our outing. We were told to be in the Lobby ready to go at 6.45 for a 7pm pick up. We were there but the tour guide was held up in traffic. There were two other groups of people waiting for the same tour -two guys and what turned out to be grandparents with their teenage granddaughters. Not sure what Nationality the guys were but the family were Americans, three of them chewing gum with mouths open wide, it looked terrible! When the tour guide arrived the grandfather decided to go to the toilet before we left. The guide was not impressed, we were in for a fun night with this lot. On the bus and the Americans sat in the seats in front of us and the seats behind us. It was nearly a full bus so we were stuck. As we headed of the Grandparents started a conversation, making it hard to hear the guide. We found out at the first stop that they have done the tour before, they were only there for the grandchildren. Now the Grandmother was amusing to watch. She didn't want to use the headset provided so she always positioned herself right next to the guide. She would practically run to catch up with him when we were moving to the next stop and constantly tried to chat with him. Anyway, the guide knew his stuff and was able to point out the sites where the murders took place and explained what it would have looked like at the time. Because he was a little late tonight there were lots of guides on the streets doing similar tours. He scoffed at some of them, specially the guy dressed up like Jack the Ripper supposedly, I thought he looked more like Sherlock Holmes.

We stopped at a restaurant/bar for a drink and he came around to see if we had any questions. Christine had already made a bad impression on him as she took a photo just as he turned and looked in her direction. The flash was on auto so it went off and completely distracted him as well as apparently causing serious retina damage - what a girl! Anyway when he came to see if there were any questions he walked straight passed her, she had questions! Just before we moved off again she managed to ask her questions. He was impressed that she was aware that Walter Sickert was a supposed suspect, but doubted that he did it. Our tour finished at the Sherlock Holmes pub, we had a quick look at the museum before walking back to our hotel. It was pretty late and it was a busy day so it was pretty much straight to bed!

Posted by Christinesolo 10:53 Archived in England Comments (0)

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