That.damn.overnight.bus. I was headed back to London. I literally cursed the human that recommended this as a cheap, easy way to travel around Europe. When I ran down my itinerary plenty of people recommended busses, however that wasn’t the best way to get where I was going. Besides, with all of the transportation costs to and from other modes of transportation, I may as well had paid for flights to major airports and skipped this bus altogether. The $20 wasn’t worth it. I’d have gladly spent the coin on the flight. Why? I’ll tell ya.
I arrived in London around 7am after the longest bus ride of my life. Side note: I’m so glad I experienced this because I was planning to take an overnight bus during my S.E.A. trip later this year. I’m sure the bus ride would’ve been amazing had I had an actual opportunity to sleep. The seats that wouldn’t stay reclined could have been a minor discomfort if it weren’t for the man literally banging his head into the back of my seat, hoping to get comfortable. I’d probably recommend the ride to you if the bus weren’t uncomfortably chilly. I swear I’d say go for it if we weren’t forced to get off in the literal middle of night to go through customs and get yet another passport stamp. Hell, I’d buy your ticket for you if it weren’t for the 4am disembarkation of the bus, only to be forced to board a ferry and sit inside, still in the cold, in uncomfortable seats and wide awake while we crossed the English Channel. By the time we’d crossed and I was back on the bus, still struggling to find a thing I call comfort, we were already practically in London. Great, right? It was all over. Wrong! My noon check-in and option to store my bags at 10am at my airbnb was hours away. It was 7am remember? I did my zombie walk to a nearby cafe, lugging my backpack which was growing heavier by the second, and ordered up a blueberry muffin and early grey. I had time to waste.
Once 8am rolled around I decided that I couldn’t take being in the cafe another second. I strapped up my backpack and headed toward the airbnb on foot. I barely do public transportation when traveling, especially not the bus. I’d get some exercise, take in the sites, and do my favorite thing…roam foreign neighborhoods. By the time I arrived at my house I only had to lurk around the neighborhood for a half hour or so before I could at least set my things down. Luckily my generous airbnb host said I could come back in an hour to check in officially. Hot shower here I come!!! And there I went.
This go round I was on the opposite side of London, but still about 40 minutes away on foot from major attractions. In order to get to Westminster to get some photos I was saving for this specific day, I crossed the bridge directly next to Big Ben, or rather Large Benjamin as I like to call him. I roamed the area for hours and hours, never knowing exactly where I’d head next. I’d pass places I’d seen the week before and places I’d never seen and will probably never see again. I promise I love London.
One of my absolute favorite things to do is get lost in museums, so when my friend from Copenhagen told me London museums were free it was immediately added to my itinerary for my return. At some point I made my way to Trafalgar square and entered a museum that caught my eye just days before. I roamed, sat and observed, emailed my mentor, and then some. When it was time to head back home, as I was beyond worn out, I stopped at an Italian restaurant for a meal. I would’ve gladly settled for fish n’ chips again but as usual couldn’t find a good place. I ordered up an entire pizza for myself and an uber delicious adult beverage, an elderflower collins. It was pricey, not surprisingly pricier than everything else over the last week, but I wanted to treat myself, damnit. No regrets over here.