Thursday, December 15, 2011

The Gang's All Here

Lee's wireless mouse that's connected to the Mac must hate me; I've been arguing with it all day and Lee won't let me throw it out the window and into the pool just for the satisfaction of watching the splash and thinking about its circuits shorting.  Meanie head.  Well, I'm updating the ol' blog while it IS working.  Harrumph.

Soooooo Bennet and Missy arrived the day before Thanksgiving, so Lee and I packed up the parental units into a huge and ancient Toyota van that our neighbor lent to us, and hit London early in the morning to go see the Changing of the Guard (should that be capitalized?  I kinda think not...) and run by the Hard Rock Cafe to get Dad a shirt before the rest of our posse arrived.

Honestly, I was kind of surprised that there wasn't more to see with this whole guard-changing thing.  Bit of a letdown.

Though I like watching horses.

All we saw is all these people in uniforms come around a corner, then this band plays some music inside the fence line, and then it's pretty much over with.

And as a former band brat, all I could think of is "They do this every other day and they don't have the music memorized yet?!"  For shame, dudes.

There's the crowd in front of the palace.

And here's Lee and me in front of the Hard Rock, and London's Hard Rock is actually the FIRST Hard Rock.  And still we've never been inside it; the shop is in a separate building (you can see the shop door to the right of me and Lee) and that's all we've been inside.  I take it back; Dad went in to check out their bathroom facilities.  He didn't tell me what color the soap was, though.

Come to think of it, we may have gone to the Hard Rock first and then the changing of the guard.  Kind of hard to tell when I'm trying to squish together pictures from three different cameras.

Mom with one of the iconic red telephone booths all over London.  Most of them don't seem to have functioning phones anymore in this day of widespread cellphone use, but they're such a quintessentially Londonish thing that I wonder if they'll get rid of them.  They're on a lot of postcards along with the Beefeaters and double-decker buses.

Then we headed back to Heathrow to pick up Missy and Bennet, and just so they'd know it was us we all wore Baylor shirts and I printed out some signs for us.

All for naught because their plane arrived an hour EARLY and they were already waiting for us when we got there.  Dangit!  So we all ate breakfast at a restaurant in the airport, stowed their baggage in the ginormous van, and then whisked them off on the Tube to explore London a bit and keep them awake to speed the time change transition.

All us girls got on the Tube first and all sat together, leaving Bennet, Lee and Dad to sit on the other side in complete violation of man-spacing rules.  Because men have silly rules.  If two dudes go see a movie together, they leave a seat open in between them.  It's man-spacing; Lee's explained this to me more than once although I think it's silly.

Anyway, our first destination was, of course, Big Ben.

Here's Mom's second contender for Christmas card pictures.  Big Ben I think is more likely to be Christian than Stonehenge.

And since the days are so short here in the late fall and winter, it starts getting dark by 4:00 in the afternoon.

Mom took this one, making me wish I'd gotten one from this perspective on our big camera.

And there's Westminster Abbey, which we still haven't gone into.

On our way back to the Tube, we stopped to take pictures with a pair of very nice policemen, and I think it's kinda funny how the flash made them show up and you can't hardly see anything else.

Teehee.  Then we hopped back on the Tube to go to Mom's destination of choice:  Abbey Road, the recording studio famously used by the Fab Four back in the day.

Kinda looks unassuming.  I was a little disappointed that all the signs that say Abbey Road are way up on the buildings, like three stories up behind fences; Mom says that's to keep Beatles fans from stealing them and she's probably right.  All the other street signs are down on the fences right next to the street, often at like knee height.

The wall right in front of the recording studio is covered in graffiti.

I took the picture of "All you need is love" but the ginormous orange Palestine kind of distracts from it.

Then we tried and failed miserably to recreate the Abbey Road album cover.  It's hard because there's not a stoplight and traffic does to whizzing through there, and despite it being only 5:00 in the afternoon it was pretty much pitch black.

Horrible picture, but we tried.  None of us wanted to take our shoes off to pretend that we were Paul from the album cover.


CCsMom said...

Guess what -- I didn't use either Big Ben OR Stonehenge photos for my Christmas picture -- you'll just have to wait and see what I did.

Thoughts by B and M said...

I love the photo with Big Ben in the background! :) Oh, and a CD is coming your way with pictures. I thought about uploading them all to winkflash (that's what you use, right?) would that be easier????

Anonymous said...

Yahoo!!!! You're finally blogging your Mom's trip over the pond!!! It's fabulous and I giggled all the way through (of course :o). Thanks so much for sharing Christy, looks and sounds like ya'll had such a wonderful time.
ps-did ya'll shop at any scrapbook stores?
Thanks again for sharing and most of all. . . .Merry Christmas!