Day three in London began much earlier than the day before as we hopped on the District Line and headed to the Tower of London first thing. The view of the entire thing as we emerged from Tower Hill station was spectacular, with Tower Bridge and the Thames in the background. Our London Passes got us in the gate quickly and we wandered around a bit while awaiting the beginning of the next guided tour, an amazing must-do, in this tourist’s opinion. Our Yeoman Warder’s name was Jim and he was brilliant, filling us in on the history of the Tower, from the bits we knew to the many that we didn’t. Our tour began in what was the moat – now filled and covered with impeccable grass – moved on to Traitors’ Gate, and then many other sites before ending in the chapel. After, we made our way next door to the Crown Jewels, overwhelming in their beauty and quantity, and then we had a lovely lunch in the café before exploring some more on our own.
We then walked up to Tower Bridge and caught a bus (our first one and, unfortunately, not a double-decker one) to Borough Market where we wandered around the stalls. This California girl couldn’t resist buying a tiny loaf of sourdough bread (it wasn’t really sour at all by Northern California standards). We then hopped the Jubilee Line to Covent Garden where we wandered around the Seven Dials area, a nice little happenstance for me since The Seven Dials Mystery is my favourite Agatha Christie novel. My feet were threatening to detach themselves, so we popped into Shuh so that I could buy a pair of Toms (I didn’t bring any of the three pairs that I have at home), which will probably remain one of the best purchases of my trip. I wore them out of the store and my feet have thanked me ever since. A stop at Neal’s Yard Dairy got us some lovely goat cheese and then we hopped on the Piccadilly Line at Leicester Square.
We got off at Hyde Park Corner and wandered through the park for a very little ways (it’s a very big park and I plan to spend a day wandering all around it when I get back to London), turning around at the Serpentine and making our way back. Along the way, I saw my first bluebells, something that’s been on my list to see while I’m here for ages since we don’t have them at home. They were beautiful and there were white ones scattered amongst them as well. As we wandered through them, we met two very friendly – and hopeful – squirrels. Unfortunately, we had to disappoint them, since our sourdough bread and goat cheese were to be saved for later. We made our way back to the Tube and then to the Blackbird, the Earls Court pub that we ate at our first night. They did have the smoked fish pie this time around and it was very good…and very rich. C’s friend then met us there and we visited for a bit before we said goodnight and headed back to the flat. I’m still hoping to venture down to West Wittering tomorrow, so we’ll need an early start to catch the train from Victoria.