As we got closer to our destination, it was awesome looking out the window at the landscape below. The broken fields of hedgerows was unmistakably European. Our descent into Heathrow had us make a series of tight turns south of London and I could occasionally catch a glimpse of the skyline. I unfortunately didn’t see much I recognized, but I was able to pick out the Battersea Power Station.
We landed at Heathrow without incident and was able to get through immigration with no issue. It was a bit disappointing that we did not get stamps on our passports, but that’s not why we were here. We took an Uber from the airport to Eton, seeing some local roads in the process. My wife fell asleep, but I was entirely too excited.
We were dropped off in front of a shop on Eton High Street where we would stow our bags for the afternoon. A pleasant little shop, I wish I lived somewhere that I could visit one regularly. Our tourism vacation officially kicked off as we crossed Windsor Bridge and saw the ramparts of Windsor Castle.
The castle itself was pretty cool, but I’ll be perfectly honest I don’t remember that much of it. We had a great tour guide that took us through the grounds and told us lots of cool things while it spit some rain (the only time it did so during the day on the England part of our trip). We really didn’t get to see much if any of the inside as I recall, but that might have been our fault. We were also a bit tired and hungry. So after we had our fill of the castle we wandered into Windsor to find some lunch.
Lacking imagination, we settled on a place called Bill’s where my wife had a burger and I think I had eggs benedict. It was very good, and settled us down enough where we could get through the rest of the day to when our flat opened up for occupation. After lunch we got some pounds out of the ATM, retrieved our bags from the shop (and got a couple snacks for the train ride in), and came back to the Windsor and Eton Central station. It was a short ride to Slough, where we switched trains into Paddington Station. We then took the tube to Kensington High Street. We did see an amusing game of swan rodeo as we were leaving Eton.
Our rented flat was right across the street from Kensington Town Hall. It was a great location, although the particular street was a tad busy. Thankfully we didn’t have to worry about parking. We had designs about renting a car and driving into the country, but it didn’t happen this trip.
It was a small flat, but that’s just what we wanted. After settling in, we decided that the best thing to do on our first night was to walk the couple of blocks to the Sainsbury’s Local. There we found some pasta we could cook, and a few more goodies. Here was the first I learned to appreciate good milk chocolate from Cadbury’s.
With that, we settled in for an early evening and watched some British TV. Having already been a huge fan of classics like Top Gear, Monty Python, Ab Fab, Are You Being Served? I was looking forward to some current stuff. We did find Taskmaster, Would I Lie To You?, and a couple of others that we have brought back to our kids for them to enjoy.
I touched British soil, I rode two trains and the tube…it was a great day.