And a good evening to you from across the Pond after another GREAT DAY in the Mother Country. First off - apologies for no blog last night. And now, it wasn't because mom wanted to see the Red Light District again - it was because we were simply having too much fun and our time was too precious to take the hour required for the commentary. However, as mom rolls back down the Piccadilly line to Heathrow and I sit here alone and lonely in my flat, I have the time required to cover off the last 36 hours, all of which were FANTASTIC.
So the work day was good - I got out and about for a little walk at lunch but settled for Subway again since it was by the office. I wanted a beer so bad, but I knew I'd be asleep at 3 PM if I imbibed. Consequently, I settled for a second straight 6 inch spicy Italian (that's what she said).
After work, mom and I braved the deluge (but I did get SOAKED) and visited the Van Gogh Museum, which was AWESOME. Seriously - we only had 1 hour, but it was SO WORTH IT. I've never been a big Van Gogh (pronounced - Van Gohghuh apparently - crazy Dutch people...) fan, but this museum was MIND-BLOWING and made me a HUGE fan now. Honestly, after this experience, I want to go back to the Dam again - something I honestly NEVER thought I'd say before last Sunday.
After the museum, we rolled over to Rembrandtplatz again, where I followed Shogun and Hitman advice and tried Ijskoud Amstel. Fellas, I gotta be honest - HEINEKEN IS WAAAAAAAAY BETTER. Hitman did say that, but Riegel - this was a rare moment of dissention in our beer camp. Meditate on this, I must...
In fact, I was craving a Heineken so bad that we went BACK to the place from the night before, where I had 3 more (Old School - if you thought I was in trouble last night, you should have seen Taylor in action. If they'd had the "Tazewell Tornado" here, my life might have been over) before heading to dinner at...wait for it...wait for it...HARD ROCK CAFE, BABY!!!! Okay, okay - I know it might be cheesy. But dude - their ribs might have been the best of my entire life (other than House of Ribs in Johnson City, TN - "Let's Go Toppers!"), and I have NO REGRETS about going there. We had a GREAT table overlooking the water, and it was just plain fun to hear some American music and eat American food. It really was a nice slice of home.
After that, we walked home, where we got mom checked in on another BA flight whilst I made myself a HEALTHY Bailey's on the rocks (a guy beside me actually laughed - I don't think he'd ever seen a Bailey's glass so full that the ice actually floats on top - I'm just ahead of my time really...) along with some Port. We then went upstairs and watched Bad Boys and cackled until we fell asleep.
We got up at 6:30 AM this morning, and I went down for brekkie whilst mom slept. She was OUT, and her sentences when she got up were much like someone conducting a seance and speaking in reverse English - HILARIOUS. All the same, we got out of there and time, to the airport by 8:15, and then we had to separate for different terminals.
Seriously - Dutch airports - WHAT THE HELL ARE THEY THINKING? You DO NOT go through security UNTIL YOU GET TO THE GATE, at which time you then show your passport FOUR TIMES even though YOU'RE ALREADY IN AN ENCLOSED SPACE AND THERE IS NO WAY YOU COULD HAVE HANDED IT TO SOMEONE ELSE. I'm sure there's a method to the madness...it just might involve a little more time in a coffee shop.
However, we both landed safely, and tonight we met at Piccadilly Circus for dinner. I took mum to the Bear and Staff so she could see where I've dropped 35% of my disposable income, only to find that the Timmy Taylor had soured! I handed the pint back in, and they gave me a choice of another. I tried Pitchfork, and it was DONKEY TRASH. So we walked to the Sussex on Long Acre, where we got some GREAT fish and chips and I had better beer. Brew #1 was a Leffe. Brew #2? HEINEKEN. That's right - I am officially a convert.
After that, mom and I walked down to Trafalgar Square, where we spent an hour sitting on the steps and taking in the sights as London slowly transformed into a city of lights. It was a magical hour, and I was constantly vacillating between loving the experience and growing increasingly sad knowing that our time was almost over. I don't remember ever being down at the Square on such a perfect night, watching the lights come on and the city settle down around me. Being there with mom was a perfect memory, and I will keep that image in my heart forever.
After that, we walked back to Piccadilly Circus, where I put mom back on the Tube. Fighting back tears (as it will be 6.5 months before I see her again), I decided it best to go for a long walk down Regent Street to clear my head. The walk did help, and I'm now in good spirits again, but it doesn't change the fact that I'll be sorry to see mom head back to the states.
Mom - it was SO much fun, and I love you so much. Thanks SO MUCH for making the trip over. London, Rome, Amsterdam, London - we've definitely seen some AMAZING things!
Muffin Puffin - be safe on the Emerald Isle, and I'll see you tomorrow. I LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!
Okay, that's all the news that's fit to print. Chat tomorrow!
Sam and (just outside Limerick) Jenny