A weekend away

We’ve had a busy weekend since I last wrote to you all. We spent Friday to Sunday with my husband’s family in London, and managed to fit in two trips to the city centre. On Friday we arrived by lunchtime and then headed into London on the train, which my boys always find exciting as it’s a rare occurrence for them. We had planned to have an hour on HMS Belfast, but after finding out we’d be shelling out a little over forty quid for the three of us adults, we decided that looking at it from the side of the Thames was quite sufficient! We did, however, get a good look at Tower Bridge, and as I’ve not lived in London since I was nine years old I get the touristy thrill every time I see it!

This is the kids and their cousin, and I think they were trying to gauge how deep the river was, although I wouldn’t swear to it!

Having seen and coveted the London Bridge Lego set, they were suitably thrilled to see the real thing. After this we got a Thames Clipper boat back to the London Eye pier, and set off to meet my brother in law near the Royal Festival Hall to find some dinner. Each time I go near the Festival Hall I’m reminded of a visit when I must have been in my early teens and we went into the hall for some lunch. I remember very distinctly listening to a string quartet whilst eating the best bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich I’ve ever had! The things that stay with you down the years!

On Saturday, it was decided that we should visit the Natural History Museum. Unfortunately, I think that most of the south east of England had had the same idea, as we were queueing for a good half an hour to get in. Inside it was very much as I remembered it from my trip whilst I was in primary school, including the blue whale model and the different sharks suspended above it. I passed on the offer to look at dinosaurs (they’ve never really excited me that much!) and left the boys to it whilst I enjoyed a sit down, a drink and a catch up on my Dad’s latest blog postsΒ (one of the comments on the first in a recent series of posts of his nearly made me cry in public, but I’ll leave you to find that!). After about an hour the kids (and I include their fathers in that category) emerged from the dinosaur exhibit and we made our way to the investigation centre, which was easily the best bit of the museum that I had seen on that trip, and probably worth the visit on its own. After booking in for a half hour slot, the kids were allowed to touch any of the exhibits, put them under microscopes or zoomed-in camera lenses attached to a monitor to examine them, play on computers and even handle some replica skulls. Nothing was off-limits in this room, and they had lots of different things to look at such as fossils, bones, antlers, insects in plastic housings, what looked like a very small stuffed alligator (do they come in miniature?!) etc etc. There was more than enough to keep them occupied for well over double the alloted half hour, and we could have gone back in but all four kids were getting weary and so we decided to call it a day and head back.

After a nice dinner it was time to get the kids to bed. On Sunday morning GG taught Cheeky the main elements of chess (I think he’s started something there, as Cheeky seemed very keen to keep playing!) whilst Handsome spent more time playing with the younger of his two London cousins. He’s always been very good with smaller children, and has a lot of time and patience for playing their games and reading them stories. I think he probably inherited this from my mother in law, as we always found it hard to keep her attention if there was a child in the room with us, as they’d always have top priority! After lunch it was time for the journey home. I don’t like the M4 very much, and so I was glad to spend a good three quarters of an hour asleep – it was well worth the stiff neck! We all arrived home ready to have a chilled out evening catching up on Strictly Come Dancing and making sure everything was ready for school. We’re not used to travelling very much, but it’s nice to get away for the occasional weekend. I’m very glad though that now my parents and my sister in law live in Cardiff so most of our visiting involves no more than a fifteen minute drive!

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2 Responses

  1. Sounds like you had a good time. Love n hugs to you all xx

  2. I remember that visit to the Festival Hall with Mark and Evelyn. That was the day we went for a tour of the Globe Theatre wasn’t it. (I had forgotten the Bacon buttie!)

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