London

Last Friday we hopped on a mid afternoon flight to head for London to visit our friend Lauren for the weekend. The weekend went by in a heart beat and we had so much fun getting to spend time together catching up, seeing where she lives, meeting friends and mixing in some tourist sites along the way.

Friday night dinner for Lauren’s roommate Amelie’s birthday at Merchant’s Tavern in Shoreditch
Saturday morning walking through Borough Market, something a little similar to Pike’s Place or Granville Island Market in Vancouver. We wandered through the stalls of fresh seafood, cheeses, meats, baked goods and settled on getting some food for lunch at some of the stalls there. I went to the Pieminister and got a British style wild mushroom pot pie thing with red wine gravy and “mash” (potatoes) while Lauren and Andrew got some loaded sandwiches at another spot. So good and refreshing to have a lot of lunch options for reasonable to-go prices, which are not widely available in Switzerland. A really fun spot to explore and drool over all the amazing food. 
Saturday afternoon the weather gods decided to remind us that they were present, and rain decended down upon us while we walked around. Not that we let that stop us! It almost felt appropriate for London and added to the “London experience.” In the afternoon, we went to Westminster to walk around the Abbey then headed over to Parliament as Lauren had reserved us tickets to do a tour and tea combo.
The sun popped out long enough after our tour of Parliament to light up Big Ben for us!
Lauren had the foresight to reserve us tickets for Parliament ahead of time, and also grabbed us reservations to attend tea after our tour on the terrace of Parliament! The tour of Parliament was really cool, we got to go through the House of Lords and House of Commons, learned a ton about British history and government, and finished up having snacks and tea on the terrace. It was so nice!!
Our snacks for tea at Parliament. It included: scones on the bottom with butter and jam, mini tea sandwiches on the middle, then mousse and a tart for each of us. Wouldn’t be a visit to London without attending tea, right? So yummy!
Lauren was an awesome host for our entire visit, and even managed to get us free tickets through KPMG to tour the Tower of London. We did a guided tour with a Yeoman Warder, which was super entertaining given his sense of humor, really neat to learn the little bits of history and overall a nice quick way to get a guided tour through the grounds. I had already been to the Tower of London twice on previous visits, but really enjoyed going through again. And especially getting to see the Crown Jewels as they are gorrrgeous. Upper left photo is us with the Tower Bridge after our tour.

The trip to London was so fun and I really hope we can make it back again while Lauren will be living there. The trip was the perfect mix of doing touristy things and getting to go out to bars and restaurants. It was also fun for Andrew and I to be in a “big city” and definitely to be in an English speaking country for the first time in four months. Another trip on the record and memories to last a lifetime with good friends. Cheers 🙂

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