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Monday, June 08, 2015


Vanessa and I spent 3 days in London and had a great time. Our trip started in style. For some reason, although I paid for standard class, we were given seat reservations in First Class which was very comfortable. Unfortunately it wasn't all the way to London. We had to change trains at Exeter as it was cheaper than staying on our original train all the way to London.

As long as the train is running on time, I love train rides out of the south west. There's beautiful scenery all the way. Below is the view from the train over the Tamar River which separates Cornwall from Plymouth.

The next beautiful area was the stretch along the Torbay coastline and River Exe estuary in Devon. This coastline is particularly vulnerable to the weather and the track here is frequently damaged by extreme weather.

Below is a photo taken on my journey back home (I think it's near Teighnmouth).The weather was beautiful on both the journey to London and on the way home.

Once we arrived in London on Thursday lunchtime, we headed straight to our hotel in Greenwich. We dumped our luggage, quickly got changed into some lighter clothes and headed out again. Our first stop was Stratford City shopping centre for lunch and a bit of shopping. The shopping centre is right next to the Olympic Park so we went for a walk around there.

This is a statue. It is possible to go to the top but we didn't realise that until we were on our way out of the park.

It was so hot and we were really tired by this time. We'd left Cornwall at 6.30am but I was actually awake at 3am. So after a short walk around the Olympic Park we headed back to the hotel to relax and have an early night.

The next day we tried to leave the hotel early and headed straight to Oxford Circus for a bit of shopping. Vanessa loves Lush products and wanted to visit the Lush store. Three floors of Lush products including many exclusive products apparently. It was certainly colourful.

My favourite London store is Liberty so we headed there next. What I love about Liberty is the fact that you can look up through the centre of the store to the other floors. They had this amazing decoration hanging from the ceiling.

I also love Liberty fabric and this is the first time I've been to Liberty since I started sewing. I had promised myself I'd buy some fabric but it's just so expensive so I made do with this beautiful make up pouch in laminated Liberty fabric. I'm using it for my fauxdori notebook, some pens and other small things I keep in my handbag.

 We also visited some other stores but didn't make any big purchases. This is what I came home with. In addition to my Liberty pouch I got a tote bag and some cute stationery stuff from Waterstones and Tiger plus a Body Shop hand cream.

The main reason for our trip was the Take That concert at the O2 Arena on Friday evening. We had the cheap tickets so we were quite high up but we were actually fairly close to the stage and once the show started it wasn't too bad. We could see fairly well.

I haven't been to a big arena concert since my late teens and shows have changed a lot. There's much more special effects now. The show was great. I quite like Take That music but I'm not a super fan and didn't know the lyrics to many of their songs, unlike most of the women around me. 

On Saturday we decided to do a river cruise as we were aching a bit from all the walking. We got on a boat at Westminster and cruised past many of London's famous landmarks like the London Eye (which we've been on in the past):

Shapespare's Globe Theatre:

 The Tower Of London:

Our cruise ended at the Tower Bridge:

We had lunch near St Paul's Cathedral and had about 1.5 hrs to spare before we had to collect our luggage so decided to head back to Oxford Circus and made a quick stop at Hamley's where we met the Royal Family (in Lego):

Then we headed back to Liverpool Street station where we'd left our luggage. Vanessa headed off to catch the Stansted Express to Stansted Airport and is now in Norway visiting my parents. 

Sadly I had to head back home to Cornwall. I got quite a bit of knitting done on this trip. I'd brought a beaded lace shawl to knit on during the train trips and in our hotel but I ran out of beads on the first day. Turned out I'd brought a spare bag of beads but it was the wrong colour. I was not happy as I really wanted to finish this shawl over the weekend. 

I had brought this skein of colourful Knitting Swede self-striping sock yarn which is beautiful to knit with. 

I'm knitting socks for Vanessa and if my train journey home had been a direct train to Liskeard sock no 1 would have been finished (except for the afterthought heel) but I had to change trains in Plymouth to a small, overcrowded train so didn't get my knitting out again for the 20 minute journey. So I've got about half the toe left to knit.

Here's my sock over-looking the Tower of London on our river cruise.

All in all it was a great trip. Vanessa is 20 years old now and is starting a year's work placement in Cardiff next month. After that she's got a year of university left. Going away with her was so precious and I'm really happy we were able to do this together. I'm quite jealous that she's in Norway now and I'm home getting ready for Woolfest in just over two weeks.

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