No much to say about the train ride down. It was a train. I listened to Blake’s 7 Audiobooks and tried to doze.
We arrived in London mid afternoon on Tuesday. We checked in and I unpacked, so my clothes wouldn’t be wrinkled. And because we are grown adult women:
I was still pretty sore from the half-marathon, so I knew I didn’t want to go galavanting about the city (until the following day). We had an idea where we wanted to go to dinner, so we headed back out only to find the restaurant in question had a queue a mile long. So we backtracked a bit and ended up at Brewhouse & Kitchen in Islington. (If you know me, you know I was giggling. I honestly, and I do mean this, had no idea that the hotel I booked was so close to Islington. I really, truly didn’t. I wanted to stay close to the Barbican, and that was really all I was thinking at the time I made the booking. Nothing else. I swear on Bailey’s life.)
It had all the main things we needed; a chicken sandwich for me and beer for Steph. I had the fried chicken sandwich, chips, and a huge salad.
After we ate, we did a bit of shopping/browsing and then headed back to the hotel. The hotel had a pool/hot tub and we wanted the chance to relax. I was still exhausted from the half and getting up early, so I was glad to spend the rest of the night soaking and relaxing.
Wednesday, we started the day with coffee at the Coffeeworks Project. I had a latte and Steph had a flat white and a sandwich. I couldn’t make a decision and ended up going to Tortilla after for chicken tacos.
Steph’s flat white
Afterwards, we headed to the Royal Exchange, where I went to Tiffany & Co to buy my 40th birthday present. You’ll see it in my selfies from the next 2 days. Then we headed into Soho/Covent Garden and wandered a bit. Steph bought some tea and then we went to Amorino for gelato. Mmmmm gelato.
We stopped for a drink at the Department of Coffee and Social Affairs. I wasn’t in a coffee mood, so I had a ginger beer.
It was then time for my blowout. In an attempt (that failed) to have something go right for something, I thought it would be nice to have my hair done. It looked great immediately after the blowout, but wind and moving about flattened it by the time I needed it to look good. Oh well, lesson learned. It was nice to get pampered anyways.
From there, we went to dinner. We went to Homeslice for some pizza. And then it was time to head over to Southbank, but there was enough time for some selfies first.
We headed over to the National Theatre and I got myself a gin and tonic, per usual. And then things got a bit weird.
For the duration of this trip, I kept having allergic reactions. I have NO idea what caused them; I didn’t eat anything I hadn’t eaten before. So of course, right before it was time to be seated I was as red as a lobster. My face was numb and my neck was swollen. I was completely panicking. I did ask for assistance, which I normally wouldn’t have done but I didn’t have any antihistamines on me. Of course, they didn’t either, but I was more worried about missing the play (of course I was).
Three Days in The Country was absolutely fantastic. Granted, it’s the second time I’ve seen it, but it was just as hilarious as the first time. Actually no. It was even funnier the second time. Mark Gatiss absolutely killed the proposal scene again, crawling about the stage like a crab as he tried to unsuccessfully get to his feet; at one point he looked how I am certain I had looked the week before in Pilates class. And once again, John Simm played the unrequited lover with the utmost brilliance.
And I bet you can all guess what happened next?
I’m really, really very lucky. There was a lot of waiting as Mark didn’t come out for almost an hour. When he saw us all waiting, he did a doubletake and then pretended to go back inside, but he came out and was once again so generous with his time. I was third to speak to him and Steph piped up, telling him it was my birthday. He wished me a happy birthday and then asked me how old I was. He must have thought that was the wrong thing to ask, because he was like you don’t have to say, and then asked me to whisper it in his ear. (OMG!) He had to bend down so I could (Of course; if there is a next time, I need to wear heels!) I told him and we had a giggle, and he signed my copy of the Vesuvius Club and took a picture with me. He wished me a happy birthday again, and I thanked him again, and Steph and I headed off/got out of the way, so that the others who were waiting could have their turns.
Of course I was totally giddy afterwards as we headed back to get the Tube to the hotel. We stopped to take a selfie and some other pictures.
My Gwen Cooper tooth gap is getting pretty serious here.
I was still pretty giddy when I got up, and excited for Hamlet. We went to Friends of Ours for breakfast. I had scrambled eggs, toast, and a cold brew coffee with cream.
We wandered around a bit before our next appointment, which was an hour to spend at London Cat Village, petting cats! It was a fun hour and a completely different way to spend part of my birthday. I think many of them were tired when we got there, and they didn’t all want to play, especially this one, who slept nearly the entire time!
A very soft cat
I was going to try to cram the rest of the trip into this post, but it’s gotten pretty long. Part 2 will feature Hamlet and fish tacos.