United Kingdom & Republic of Ireland [2005]

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Day 6

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Day 21

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day 1 [] August 2, 2005 [] Canterbury, England

We arrive in London, England, at around 11:15am but didn’t get off the plane for a long time because the moveable ramp wouldn’t connect to the plane so they had to get stairs and a shuttle. When we went through passport checks the man was not happy that we didn’t have a place to stay our first night in.

The passport man let us in and we took the train to Paddington Station from Heathrow. We asked a couple of remarkably pleasant officers if our Britrail tickets worked for the Underground (the Tube). They ended up not working, and we had to buy separate tickets for that, which a nice bloke named Sunday helped us do. At the next station we looked how to get to Canterbury after reserving our hotel for the 17th-22nd when we return to London after gallivanting all over. Ashford was the closest town to Canterbury, or so it seemed, so we hopped on the 1452 to Ashford. Jon slept and Lisa worried, for what ended up excellent woman’s intuition. Afterwards Lisa noted that she had noticed the Southwest Trains label on the trains, which at first glance looks like it was just a company but with hindsight it was a direction/sector of the trains. After the hour-long ride, we learned we went the wrong way and had to ride back, another hour.

At the London Waterloo station there was a terror alert, and the officers cleared everyone away from platform 15 for what ended up being a false alarm. Lisa went to the toilet and the stall door had a window and to flush she had to pull a chain from above the toilet. There were officers with bright yellow jackets and bucket police hats all over, even at the remote Ashford place. On the train to canterbury finally, we met a wonderful man who talked with us for a while. He was worried about us getting a room to stay, as it was already 6pm. We got to Canterbury West station and stopped at the first hotel we saw, Falstaff Hotel. The lady at the front desk said a night cost 115 Sterling Pound but that she was feeling generous and asked for the price we wanted to pay. Lisa said 60 or under.

We got a room and went exploring. Saw Canterbury Cathedral, St. Augustine's Abbey (just the outside gate, it was closed), and Canterbury castle ruins. The streets were intriguing, it was a great place to walk around. We ate at a bar that was actually serving food at the time. Lisa had her first taste of Jacket potatoes which is basically a baked potato with a crispy skin. Jon had a Guinness for Nate. Lisa had a taste (YUCK!).

Magnum Count: Lisa ate a magnum Classic for she could not find a Magnum Double Carmel.

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