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Published: October 2nd 2018
This morning we were up at 3 to be showered, shaved, shampooed and packed to be picked up by the Flybus at 4! We found it had been raining all night!
We were ferried to the depot and put onto a coach for the 45 minute drive to Keflavik. On arrival it was cold, wet and windy.
Luckily IcelandAir had sent us email confirming our upgrade to Saga Premium (they only have 2 classes on their 737), because all of their flights seem to leave early in the morning - there were flights next to ours going to Glasgow and Edinburgh, and the upgrade increased our luggage weight allowance (thank heavens) as well as making check in stress free. We used their lounge for the hour’s wait before boarding. Orange juice with champagne with our brekky! It was amazing how many business suits were helping themselves to the hard liquor at this early hour!!
We had to walk across the tarmac to the steps leading up to our plane and I was shocked at how strong the wind was - I had to keep a strong hold of my carry-on and felt like I could blow away myself! When we were
seated the plane itself was rocking in the wind. As I was watching out the window something small and black went rushing across the runway, followed by a man in a luggage van who jumped out and retrieved the suitcase! There was another one as well from another gate! I fully expected for us to all be told to return to the terminal due to the flight being cancelled. But no, that didn’t happen, and I realized these pilots are probably very experienced with these weather conditions.
Apart from wriggling like a tadpole during takeoff, we had a very smooth flight after we quickly climbed to cruising altitude, and we arrived at Gatwick some 40 minutes early!!
We were given a lovely breakfast up there in the front row! So with two breakfasts under our belt we weren’t going to need lunch!
Arrival at Gatwick was very smooth, no customs to worry about after passport control, a straight walk through nothing to declare; a shuttle to the south terminal to catch the express train to Victoria station. Once we got our bearings we walked two minutes and arrived at Ebury Street, where members of Tom’s family lived all through the
1800s. We were booked in to #111, which used to be one of their homes but it’s now a boutique hotel.
Our room is at the front on the first floor. There are no public rooms, apart from the downstairs reception room. Such a pity. After settling in and unpacking a little, we went for a wander. We are in Belgravia - quite an expensive part of town. Down on the corner there’s a cake shop - Peggy Porschen it‘s called - people are sitting outside and others are taking photos (Japanese I think). Almost like a photo shoot, looking very posed. We found a Sainsburys around the corner and bought some fruit salad, danishes and salmon and cream cheese sandwiches for tomorrow’s breakfast.
We decided on the local pub for dinner - Thomas Cubitt’s hotel. It was full of people in suits, talking loudly and drinking wine and beer - very noisy but the lamb shank pie was wonderful, and Tom‘s fish and chips came with a half a lemon wrapped up in muslin so the seeds don’t fall in your food! With a glass of French pinot noir for me, a beer for Tom and that
was $100 thank you very much! Times haven’t changed here in London - I can remember a similar shock at Paddington some years ago.
After this morning’s early start we had an early night in our four poster!
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