At the end of May Sally and I went to stay in London for a couple of nights. I now give you a run down of those days including various comments and things I remember.
We arrived on a Sunday evening. After parking the car we walked to our apartment block, carrying enough kit to survive for two nights and days. We stayed in the Pan Peninsula West Tower on the 26th floor. The décor was interesting. The apartment was mostly black walls and floor along with no bedrooms (studio flat) and built in appliances. Many thanks to Mazza.
Once in the apartment we settled and spent time on the balcony overlooking the docks and most of London. We drank champagne and watched the sun set over most of London. The champagne sunset contributed to a partial completion of a promise I made a while back. I intend to complete the promise fully later in the year.
Once the sun had set we tried to find somewhere to eat food. The problem was that most places were shut, it being around 21:30 on a Sunday. I ended up downloading an app, signing up and getting kebab delivered to the apartment! Classy.
On Monday we made sure to get breakfast at a Café Nero in the Canary Wharf shopping complex. Now, I will admit that I really struggled with the layout of this shopping area. Here’s a link to the map, see what you think. It seemed there were three or four main shopping halls, all on different levels and all connected by strange walkways. The map seemed a fanciful sci-fi work of art to me and walking around stressed me intensely. Sally seemed to work out the map and so I relied on her to find our way.
A flight on the Emirates Air Line was next, taking a cable car from south of the river near the O2 Arena to the north side of the river near the Excel Arena. One shocking thing was that the price of a tube return from Canary Wharf to the O2, which is one stop, was £9-60 because it crosses a “zone line”, how pathetic! The cable car journey was much smoother than I expected, it was most enjoyable.
We then wandered around towards the Excel Arena before heading back to the O2 and looking at the Emirates display thing. They had a Lego model of a Rolls Royce Trent engine. This made me very excited.
Our lunch was in a Brazilian themed restaurant within the O2 complex. There were lots of different eateries there but the Brazilian tempted us most.
The cocktails were very nice, as was the food.
After lunch we wandered (by Tube) into the centre of London. A short visit to the M&M shop in Swiss Corner was completed. The whole shop smelt of chocolate, which was nice at first but sickly afterwards. Also, the people were just annoying. It was a shop that sold tat. M&M branded tat. It was full of shit. We purchased some M&Ms though, it would have been rude not to.
Next up was drinks at The Chandos, always a great place to go for a cheeky pint when near Trafalgar Square. We had lager and a short with mixer for me.
The Shard beckoned. You can feel this beast looming over London. The Eye Of Sauron is missing though, they need to create that and insert it at the top, then perhaps we could steal some tourists heading for New Zealand.
I think you’ll find that the Shard is really a Star Destroyer waiting to be launched.
The observation deck of the Shard is on Level 69. I kid you not. This made me giggle a lot. I am sure there is an architect somewhere who wakes up every day with a wry smile at this.
The view from the top is just stunning. We had a glass of champagne while walking the perimeter of the glass just staring out at London and its surrounds. We could see the QE2 Bridge, which is a bit of a Kent/Essex landmark and well known to anyone who uses the M25. Many of the buildings nearby were highlighted in electronic viewfinders so you could find out about them. Here’s a picture of Canary Wharf and the apartment block we stayed in.
Although it was murky and not very bright we could see a long way. At one point a helicopter flew by at eye level. I liked this. Dinner that night was at a GBK somewhere in the freaky Canary Wharf shopping complex. The next day was the end of our London adventure. We packed and drove out by City Airport to head to the Midlands.
The last thing I need to say on this matter is what were the burnt sticks in the apartment? Why would you have them? Why?