home page

about us
       about us

see The Beast
       see the beast

our photo album
       our photo album

explore tucson
       explore tucson

other links

email us
       email us

sign our guest book
       sign our guest book

home page



Our Magnificent Journey
Chapter 6
Europe 2005
London, Paris, Normandy, Prague


Carol and David  
Day 3

We both slept soundly and comfortably. Plenty of cool air through the open window and very little street noise.


The Bonnington Hotel room is typically small but adequate. The double bed is very comfortable and the bathroom has a nice tub/shower, in which we luxuriated in the morning. All in all, a nice room.


After a delicious English breakfast of juice, coffee, toast, fruit, eggs, potatoes, sausages and bacon, we took the Central Line to Liverpool Street Station. Walked a few blocks and immersed ourselves in the massive Brick Lane Market. Carol bought a beautiful blue scarf for 2 pounds. Noticeable Muslim presence here. We enjoyed wandering through the stalls, then decided we ought to compare this market to the Notting Hill Portobello Road Market.

vendor at the Bricklane Market

So back to Liverpool Street Station, onto the westbound Central line, and ten stops west we found ourselves in a wholly different world. The same blue scarf now costs 15 pounds. Not quite as many people and surprisingly, no stalls in the middle of Portobello Road as we remembered from our 2001 trip.

"Egg Building"

The weather is very nearly perfect – sunny, cool, slightly breezy. We are wearing sweaters and jackets and are enjoying the mid 60 degree F temperatures.

Portobello Road

When our feet finally said “whoa” we stopped and enjoyed iced coffee at a table outside a Coffee Republic. We sat, rested, and enjoyed our favorite traveling pastime – people-watching.


Re-energized, we spent some more time window-shopping, then walked to Bayswater Road, headed east several blocks until we came to Kensington Palace and the west entrance to Hyde Park.

Carol at Hyde Park

The Park is full of people enjoying themselves on a cool spring Sunday. We strolled slowly arm-in-arm through the park in search of a toilet, then parked ourselves on a bench along the banks of the Serpentine, where we watched children playing beneath a statue of Peter Pan. The tranquility of the park is much appreciated.

A would-be Peter Pan at the foot of the Peter Pan statue at Hyde Park
April flowers in bloom at Hyde Park

We walked east up Bayswater Road to Marble Arch/Speaker's Corner and took the Central Line Tube to Tottenham Court Road where we changed to the Northern Line and jumped off at old familiar Leister Square. We sat at the Crescent and people-watched as we enjoyed a respite of mid-eastern lunch of Greek olives in oil, fried cheese, stuffed grape leaves, pita bread with taramasalata, tzatziki and hummus and a small Grolsch beer.


After lunch we walked back through the bustle of Leicester Square to the Tube, where we took the Picadilly Line two stops to Holborn, and then walked three blocks to the hotel for a rest.


After an hour's snooze at the hotel, we dressed and ventured back out into the brisk early evening air. Walked past the British Museum to the Morgan Hotel where we stayed in '01, window-shopped until we found ourselves at Trattoria Verdi, an Italian restaurant half a block west of our current hotel. Sat down next to a couple who I could have sworn were Italians, since the gentleman was speaking what sounded like native Italian to the waitress. Wrong - they were Ray and Roisin O'Conner, an Irish (Belfast) couple now living in Long Island, NY. We spent a very enjoyable hour or so swapping stories. Ray and Roisin are well-traveled and we learned quite a bit about Ireland from them.

Roisin and Ray O'Conner

My dinner of spaghetti vongole was delicious and Carol enjoyed prawns. We accompanied the dinner with a bottle of Montepulgiano D'Arbuzzo Calle Cavalieri, and topped off dinner with a delicious chocolate mousse. Dinner was quite good, but the highlight truly was the time spent with Ray and his lovely wife Roisin. They happened to be staying at our hotel and we hope to see them at breakfast.


Dinner over, we walked around the corner to the Swan where our friend Peter was bartending. I had a Theakston's Old Peculiar at Peter's suggestion – a rich, dark, creamy and highly alcoholic ale. Delicious.


After saying farewell to Peter (again) we walked 2 blocks to a pub called Friend-at-Hand which we discovered in '99. Chris the bartender was long gone. It was now 10:30pm - close to closing time, so we shared a pint of Guinness then slowly strolled back to our hotel and fell into bed.


Watched a late-night British TV show called Live-Action Plastic Surgery. Unlike U.S. “makeover” shows, this was beyond “explicit” and showed penis reconstruction, breast implementations, even an “anal lift” for a porn star. This on a “mainstream” channel with commercials. Interesting note: all of the surgeons were Americans.


Another glorious day.


Pedometer reading for today - 11.20 miles

Previous Day

Next Day


 copyright 1998 / david and carol lehrman / all rights reserved
email david@davidandcarol.com