2009 TRIP TO ENGLAND, by Colin L. Miller

Intro May 28 May 29 May 30 May 31 June 01 June 02 June 03 June 04 June 05 June 06 June 07 June 08 June 09 June 10 June 11 June 12 June 13 Expense Report

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Up at 8:15 AM and still with a headache from yesterday, I went downstairs to the hotel restaurant. The staff was all Russian. Apparently, they take the place of Mexicans in my home area. The meal was a typical English Breakfast, with toast, fried egg, beans, cooked half-tomato, fruit, juice, and coffee, charged to my credit card, £12.50. I wasn't impressed. I then headed out through Hyde Park past Kensington Palace and over to the Natural History Museum. The weather was still sunny, warm and clear.

The museum was large, with a variety of exhibits, from ancient fossils to modern creatures. Of course, the most popular area was the dinosaurs, and the biggest attraction was the T. Rex exhibit, which included a life-sized animatronic Tyrannosaur with sound effects and steam. In the gift shop I got some postcards and international postcard stamps. I walked back to the hotel past the Prince Albert Memorial.

After a nap, I went back out. A block or two north of the hotel I found a small newsstand shop on Craven Road that did phone top-ups, so I gave them the phone ID card and a £20 note and got some minutes for the phone. I did a quick test call back home (seven time zones behind) and it worked perfectly. I headed on to the nearby Underground Lancaster Gate Station. After waving my OysterCard at the reader, I went in and down a long series of stairs, then down a tunnel and finally onto the platform. A couple of minutes later I was on the train, and then I was at Oxford Circus Station. I went to another platform and got on a train headed for Waterloo Station near where the IMAX theater was. After wandering around the Waterloo area, I found the tunnel (or subway, as the locals call it) to the theater, which was built in the center of a large traffic circle. The ticket I'd ordered online a month ago was waiting for me. After a wait in the upstairs lobby, I was at my second viewing of the new movie "Star Trek" this time on a gigantic IMAX screen. It was the same movie, but larger, so I could see more details and the sound was clearer.

I was out by 8:30 PM, but the sky had not yet gotten dark. I wandered around the Victoria Embankment area across from the London Eye. I was planning on getting some photos of the city at night. I waited on Westminster Bridge as car and foot traffic went past. Gradually it got darker and the street and building lights came on, and so I got some pics of Big Ben & Parliament and a few other sights. The city activity changed to one of a weekend night, with people going to parties and pubs. I walked into the city on a general path back to the hotel. My feet were sore from all the walking today and it was getting late, 11:00 PM. I found the nearest Underground station, Chancery Lane. At 11:10 PM I took the Central Line westbound to Lancaster Gate, and I walked the rest of the way back to the hotel where I could get some rest for the next day’s activities. Tomorrow, I would visit the British Museum, the Tower of London, and Tower Bridge.

T-Rex Exhibit, Natural History Museum, Prince Albert Memorial, IMAX Theater, Big Ben & Parliament at Night

Intro May 28 May 29 May 30 May 31 June 01 June 02 June 03 June 04 June 05 June 06 June 07 June 08 June 09 June 10 June 11 June 12 June 13 Expense Report