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Published: June 14th 2015
London was chilly -- 55 to 65 all day -- and misty...the perfect London day!
Andrew and I had coffee and breakfast at Esqiures Coffee, which looks like the British version of Starbucks. From there, it was off to our top priority and total bucket list item: the walk at Abbey Road. We were like kids at Christmas on the tube ride and walk. We walked down Grove End Road about 1/4 of a mile when we saw the Abbey Road street sign. We rounded the corner, and there it was: the iconic crosswalk where The Beatles shot that most famous photo. We just stood and stared at it, grinning and slapping each other on the back. Then it was time to get to work. Abbey Road is a pretty busy street, so we had to wait til traffic was clear, then run into the road to get the photo. Of course, there were a number of other fans doing the same thing, so it was a rather interesting time jockeying for positions and dodging cars! We managed to get our shots, along with pictures of Abbey Road Studio, the grafitti wall, and staging area used by The Beatles before
their shoot. We also visited a Beatles store about 1/2 mile away. All in all, the experience was better and more moving than expected.
We took the tube from Abbey Road to Westminster Bridge (which had amazing views of the Thames) to begin our tour of the other incredible sights of London: Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, 10 Downing Street, Old Scotland Yard, Trafalgar Square, and countless war memoials. I keep saying this, but walking through history was incredible and overwhelming.
After a full English breakfast at Old Shades pub, we went to the Tower of London, where we spent the rest of the afternoon. The original tower itself dates back to William the Conquerer, and over the years served as royal palace, prison, garrison, and town center. We saw the sites where Henry VIII condemned his wives to death, the hill where Anne Bolynne was beheaded, and where the bodies of 1500 executed royals were buried. The grand finale was a tour of the Crown Jewels, where we saw the crowns, scepters, and other royal treasures of the past 500 years. Amazing and beautiful.
From there, Andrew and I continued to walk London. We
saw Buckingham Palace, Hyde Park, King George VII's arch, and Royal Albert Hall. We must have walked 10 miles today...at least it felt like it! Given our limited time here, we wanted to make every moment count. After a quick dinner we headed back to the hotel to rest.
London has been absolutely amazing, exceeding every expectation. Tomorrow, we head for Brighton!
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