Sunday, 19 July 2009

Hangin' with Henry...


And another great day in London is in the books. This weekend has been so wonderful, and it's really done a lot to energize mine and Jenny's time here. There is just so much to see and do (in London, in the UK, and on the continent), and while we know we won't get to it all, we are conscious that we have to hit a new spot every single weekend (at least!) to ensure we make the most of our time here. The good news is that I'm much more relaxed about the budget now - at the end of the day, this experience is worth more than any IRA contribution, and we intend to live it up!

Today started at 8:10 am (I know, CP, pick yourself up off the floor), when my muffin puffin whipped up a fantastic egg-cheese-pepper dish with some coffee (in other words, Rice - she's comin' after your casserole next). After that, we hopped over to Waterloo East and took the 10:57 AM train to Hampton Court. There, we visited a destination that has eluded us since 2006 - Hampton Court Palace.

This palace, one of the favored homes of Henry VIII, was truly amazing. JT and I spent 5 hours in there, exploring the various parts of the castle. This year is the 500th anniversary of Henry's Coronation, and they have got the place looking tip-top to mark the occasion.

First and foremost, as an honored guest, you need to dress the part:

Jenny and I donned these uber-stylish robes, walking around the whole time as though we were part of the next Harry Potter film. Actually, they did come in handy, as the English summer handed us a blustery 60 degree day today...

Also, when dining with the king, it is important that he present all of his finest pewter for distinguished guests from the hills of Appalachia.
As you can see in the photo below - the tyrannical Henry spared no expense in welcoming us from the New World:

The tour was brilliant, taking you through 500 years of history, some Tudor, some Baroque, still others Georgian. And then there were the brilliant gardens and the maze, which I will confess was less than I expected. That being said, the gardens (and the beautiful trumpeter swans in both the canal and the long water) were awesome. All in all, we spent 5 hours here, and I will recommend this trip (13 miles and 30 minutes from London) to anyone, as it's a wonderful walk through history.

Tomorrow is back to work, but no worries here. I think we're going to try some of the local watering holes in the neighborhood. In fact, since we're so energized about trying new things, I think the new goal is to hit a new pub every night on the way home. I mean, at least one of them has to have Timothy Taylor, right?

The missus is currently slaving away in the kitchen, and we are about to tuck into some pasta. Another great day in the books - who knows what next weekend will bring! Chat soon!

Love, Sam and Jenny

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