Monday, January 24, 2011

On the road from London to Wales and back again...

Ever since we started our travels back to the U.K. on Thursday it's been a bit of a whirlwind. I had a nice start to my journey with an upgrade to Business Class and got to enjoy the new flat-beds on United Airlines, which really make a difference (even to someone as short as myself).
English countryside sunset
Arriving at Heathrow on Friday morning, we tubed it into our old West London stomping grounds of Chiswick to pick up a car, and after a quick cuppa with Charlie's folks, headed off up the M4 to see my family in Wales.
UK sunset
Our jet-lagged two and half car journey was rewarded with a lovely red sunset over the English countryside and then over the Severn Bridge into Wales.
Severn Bridge Sunset
Arriving safely, it wasn't long before our tiredness took us off to bed and jet-leg once again kicked in at 4am, which is not fun.
Lots of cups of tea and Wii games with niece and nephew later, it was time to head back to London for our Monday morning U.S. Embassy appointment (not before driving past these totally bizarre, but environmentally-friendly, Dormouse crossings over the new bypass in Wales).
Dormouse crossing Wales
We checked into the Pelham Hotel in South Kensington, after navigating the weekend engineering works which seems to have shut half of London's underground system, (which is not so easy when you're laden down with heavy suitcases). However, we discovered we have a lovely view of the London Eye from our fourth floor bedroom window, so that's a bonus.
London Eye at night
Since we've been back in London we've indulged our cravings for Pizza Express and sandwiches at Pret A Manger, whilst moaning and groaning about the cold weather and all the people smoking on the streets (you notice it so much as no one walks in L.A. as they are driving in their hermetically-sealed air-conditioned cars).
London Eye view South Kensington
Today we braved the morning rush hour and literally squeezed onto an Eastbound Piccadilly Line tube on our way to the American Embassy.

After a short wait in line outside in the cold, we ventured inside to have our visas extended and now it's time to enjoy seeing friends and playing tourist in London, whilst we wait for our passports to be returned.

Now all we need is for the sun to come out and play (although at least it's not snowing)...

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