Day Two...Part 2: We had a "Royal" afternoon

After we ate our way through Portobello Market, we jumped on one of these...
And headed to the Buckingham Palace/Royal Mews area.
We did a quick check in to make sure he was doing his job...
And it appeared he didn't need any help so we decided to RUN down the street and see if we could catch the last tour through the Royal Mews. We walked in a 4 PM and got our little headsets and took a tour through a quite fascinating area. This is where they keep all the horses, the carriages, cars, etc used by the Queen and her family. There is a lot of history in this place plus all the people that work there also live there so you really felt the sense of community and pride. 
We were constantly faced with such different worlds on this trip.
In the Ukraine, at least in the area we worked...the people had nothing and lived in very sad conditions.
Then you come to the Royal Mews and this is the horses stalls...
Notice the lighting...these horses get chandeliers and amazing tile walls. 
Do you see the contrast of the world we were experiencing?
The audio tour was quite interesting and the carriages were amazing!
It was fun to see carriages you have seen on TV taking the Queen to special events, etc.
We even saw this:
Does it look familiar?
Maybe this will remind you?
The carriages all had wonderful stories and were in incredible condition...
here is just a sampling of what we saw:

Just look at the detailing...and the GOLD!

Over the top...but interesting.
We walked around the area, then went to London's version of Time Square...Piccadilly Circus.
That describes it pretty well...it was a circus!

So many people. Lots of stores, shops, eateries and lots & lots of people. We ran across what I thought at first was a sculpture...they are everywhere in London but then upon closer look we realized they two men were real. Larry threw a few coins in their treasure box and they came alive! Pretty funny, wish I had done a video instead of pictures as it was pretty comical.

I think he was making a move on my man! Back off buster!
Larry was a good sport!
Between Ukraine, London and Paris, one thing that really stuck out is the amount of people that smoke.
I guess I have kind of gotten "use to" how nice it is in Abilene-U.S.A. to be able to enjoy supper without the smell of smoke, especially since my throat starts itching and closing up! :)
We were passing a nice cigar shop and these were in the window...nice warning!
More people should take note!!!
We had been looking for a store I had read about online called "Liberty". We had it in our notes and had an address but couldn't seem to locate it. I finally told Larry to forget it, I was so tired from walking and we were getting hungry...I know hard to believe we were hungry after the morning at the Market continual eating-fest. But what can I say, we were.
So, we were headed down a street we were told had lots of choices to eat and low and behold...what to my wondering eyes should appear....
The sad part was I was so tired that I decided not to go in. Larry couldn't believe it but I think secretively he was relieved as we were both wondering how much further we can go and we are not close to the B&B at this point. I did take pictures of the flowers sitting by the door...
and I am happy to report on our last day in London...we went back and walked through a very beautiful store that should I ever win the lottery...
It actually had some cute dishes...but once again...not easy to take back to Texas!

We ate dinner at a cafe...outside. That is one thing I did love, I think we really only ate inside a cafe or restaurant two or three times...it was so lovely to be outside! Plus so many times, we just grabbed our food at a fun vendor and kept going. Our goal of course was to see how many different foods we could try! We did well...maybe too well. :)

At some point in all the walking, we stopped by the train station and bought our tickets our trips to Oxford and Windsor. 
Have I mentioned lately how much I love their cute little taxis?
This street as so MANY were becoming more and more decked out with flags...
London knows how to celebrate and they were putting on the show for the Queen's 60th!
It was quite fun getting to see this town being "spiffied up" for the big shindig!
Another thing we read about prior to our travels was the Texas Embassy. Okay, there is a restaurant in London called that but that is not what I am talking about. When Larry was doing his research, he found out that...In London, the original building that housed the embassy of the Republic of Texas still stands. During its time as a Republic, Texas maintained three Legations (a diplomatic entity similar to an embassy): in Paris, Washington DC and London.
Okay, my husband had read this article and seen the pictures posted and actually found this little alley...in all of the crazy, busy streets and alleys...he found it. He had looked at these pictures and also had searched it on Google Street View and actually walked right to it! He cracks me up. He was born with the most amazing sense of direction and sometime after we met, he stole mine too! :)
So for all you history buffs, here it is...just exactly as described in the article! 

Larry was so proud!

We took the bus back to the B&B. It takes longer...but it was the very busiest time of day to be on the tube so we knew we would be standing for most of the ride...and honestly I am not sure either of us could have done it! :) We actually loved riding on the top deck of the bus and were never ever bored. I could not quit taking pictures of buildings, doors, clocks, flowers, people, signs...there is just something so very special about this city. It appealed to all my senses!!!

We enjoyed a few minutes on the patio before heading for bed.
Tomorrow's plan is Oxford so we have an very early train to catch so we are in
severe need of some zzzzzz's. 


Ashley said...

I'm loving reading your posts! & seeing your pictures again, you got so many good ones!

annalee said...

yes, i am commenting on almost every single post lately. i just can't get enough of all of this:)

1) cath kidson is perfection. pretend you don't know they have an online store you can order from.

2) the royal mews is where i first saw the name adelaide and fell in love with it immediately. it didn't hurt that their carriage description talked about how she wanted less frills on hers and to give to the people instead of indulging all the extras themselves.