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Published: November 10th 2017
Geo: 51.5085, -0.12574
We woke up to a little drizzle yesterday morning. We headed out towards the Duke of York column where we were to pick our tour for Buckingham Palace and the changing of the guard. The guide wasn't sure that the full changing of the guard would happen because of the intermittent rain. Lucky for us it stopped long enough for the full change to take place. He then took us to the entrance of Buckingham Palace and we went inside. There is a security check point there just like at the airports. They said take everything out of your pockets and proceed thru. I had a backpack with me and put it on the belt. Then I stepped thru. BUZZ!!!! Off go the alarms. The guy pulls me aside and wands me. Oops, I forgot to take off my watch. I go back thru. BUZZ!!! He wands me again. Oh crap, I have a knife in my pocket. I carry a 2 1/2 blade knife with me sometimes. It is a military looking knife with a locking blade. Guess what? Locking blade knives are illegal in the UK. They confiscate my knife. Crap. Luckily, I have another just
like it at home. We finally get inside Buckingham Palace and do the audio tour. The place is fantastic! The opulence is unbelievable. The only bad thing was that we couldn't take pictures inside, so you don't get to see it. After the tour we walked over to the Hard Rock Café for an American cheeseburger. It is the first Hard Rock Café. Lots of Beatles stuff. I believe it started in 1971. We then walked back to our hotel in a light rain. A nice nap and we had a late light dinner and then went into the hotel bar and listened to live music until 11. This morning we woke up to sunshine and blue sky. We walked over to Waterloo Station and took the train to Hampton Court. Hampton Court was Henry the VIII's summer home. Now Buckingham Palace has 780 rooms. A docent told us that Hampton Court had over 1000 rooms. You could easily get lost for days in that place. We went thru his apartments, several other areas including the kitchen. A docent at the kitchen told us that the huge room that we were in was only for cooking meats. He said a
series of buildings and rooms about 200 yards long was used for all of the cooking. Holy moly! We spent about 5 hours there. They have a huge garden area that just about surrounds the entire palace. We final headed back to the train station and back to our hotel. We had dinner in a nice pub near the hotel. Tomorrow starts part 5 of the trip. We take a cab back to the airport and pick up a car and start driving. On the wrong side of the car, on the wrong side of the road. Sounds like fun!
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