My European Escapade

Needless to say the two weeks was fabulous. I actually kept a log containing everything we did each day. Obviously this would be a little much for a blog post since it covers two weeks, daily. However, I will try to summerize the days and share the highlights.

June 8th: We traveled. It was long and for the most part boring. I watched the movie When in Rome on the plane. Horrid . . . sa bad. So very very bad. And I had a hard time sleeping. But that’s okay. There was one point on the plane ride that I opened the window . . . it was early in the morning London time and holy cow the sky was amazing! So many purples, oranges and pinks and the clouds look so fluffy and inviting. Incredible.

June 9th: We first rented a car. Now, I knew driving would be . . . challenging, Daddyboy having to drive on the other side of the road, mom freaking out, and Juan forced to make constant jokes. Yes, driving was a bit stressful to say the least. However, one of my favorite things that happened while driving was at the very beginning. We rent the car. LJ and I keep telling our father that a GPS would be a good decision. My father disagreed with this. Finally, the followingconversation happens.

D-boy: Dear, I’m not going to get a GPS.

Juan: Are you calling me or Sarah dear?

D-Boy: You are all dear to me.

Juan: I’m not sure how I feel about that metaphor while you’re driving.

Good times. Our first stop was Leed’s Castle. Beautiful. A smelly but nice guy kept asking me to take his picture in front of paintings which was odd because he had other people in his traveling group. Mom says that he probably thought I looked nice.

The following was my favorite sign at the castle.

Next we went into Hastings . . . St. Leonard’s By the Sea actually . . . where Daddyboy had spent part of his mission at. We got to see the park where he used to play soccer on P-day and we saw his old apartment. We also got to check out the Ocean. All very lovely.

June 10th: We headed to Highcliffe. At one point when driving we were waiting to turn right (let me just say driving in England was like being in this alternate reality with everything flipped) and cars just kept coming so I say “Holy Banana!” in frustration and then Juan asked me to “Kindly not bring divine fruit into this.” We get to our Bed and Breakfast called the Beech Tree, which was just a couple blocks away from the Beach. Fabulous. This was our favorite B&B (we loved the Hosts john and Nina). Anyway, we hopped over to Highcliffe Castle. Not really that impressive to be honest. Very moment of the day . . . later on that night we are playing Quiddler. We are hitting the later rounds and it’s Daddyboy’s turn. All of sudden mom says, “Brad, can you wait to go to sleep until after your turn is done.” That’s right my father had fallen asleep in the middle of his turn. Ha ha which is really not that surprising. My father claims he was just thinking but we all know the truth. I was laughing so hard about that one.

June 11th: We go to Corfe Castles (still one of my favorites). It’s really a bunch of ruins. But it was like walking into all the fantasy books I love so much!!!

One of my favorite moments here was when Juan and Daddyboy were playing chess which was life size up at the ruins. All of these people kept stopping to watch then play which I found entertaining. One of these people was a woman and her three or four year old son. She explained the game to him and he seemed enthralled. After about ten minutes she suggested they go because it was a long game. Her son insisted that he wanted to watch the game. So, she suggests he can roll down some hills (there were a lot of hills on the way up to the ruins otherwise there are just cliffs). Anyway, the child gets excited and starts yelling “Roll down some hills! Roll down some hills!” And he runs right to a mini hill that goes off a cliff. His mother yells after him, “Not those hills!” The whole thing was hilarious and mom and I couldn’t help but laugh. Of course, looking back on it now it seems odd that we found the thing so funny. Guess you had to be there. The child’s alive just in case there were worries. And Daddyboy won the game of chess.

When we got back from the castle we walked down to the beach. It was so nice to stand in the water and feel the sand disappear/ shift under my feet as the tide came in. So beautiful.

Next we watched World Cup (which we did often in the evenings) and I finished my Agatha Christie book, Spider’s Web (excellent . . . I never ge the killer right).

June 12th: We went to a musical festival in Wimborne. There was a ton of folk dancing which mother loved. But Juan and I loved the concerts. Paticularly Rosie Doonan and the Snap Dragons. Her music is amazing!!! It made me want to write some of my own. We spent the whole day there. We left when it started to get dark. What was funny was on our way out there were all these young people/ young adults which Juan and I had commented earlier that we had not seen many of. I guess England has a bunch of Vampires.

June 13th: Our last day of driving . . . Hallelujah! But first we stopped in Basingstoke and went to one of Dad’s old mission wards. He didn’t recognize anyone (it being over thirty years later it had changed some) but there was one woman there who had been there at his time they just didn’t know each other but she knew alot about some of the families he had known so that was nice. The building was way small, no benches. The youth speaker had to talk about chastity. That boy used the word “sexual” like fifteen times. Highly amusing. Anyway, we turned in the car and took the underground into London and arrived at our Hotel . . . The George Hotel. We had a real chill evening. My favorite part was when Juan shouted “Creamer.”

June 14th: We woke up bright and early and headed off to the Maritime Museum. Most exciting thing that happened there was that Juan and I got kicked out of the interactive room (it had been reserved for a class- there was no sign). Then we rode a double decker. Fetching awesome. Then went to the British Interactive museum. Way cool and interactive. Next we went to the London Bridge and Tower of London. That was actually a lot of fun. I bought earrings at the Queen’s House of Jewels shop. Forgot to take a picture though. I will another time.

I also ran into people (something I tended to do often on this trip just ask juan. I ran into like eight people. Not all my fault by the way). Then we went to the production of 39 Steps. Okay Bloody Brilliant! It was a four person cast and the talent was just . . . wow and I got so many ides for my drama classes. It was so so good! My favorite play we went to.

June 15th: We went to Hampton Court Palace (Henry VIII’s abode). Which means of course I was thrilled with everything. There was even some play acting. Just so cool. Then we went to Big Ben and saw the parliament building. As we were traveling on the underground to these different places they announced that two of the stations were closed due to a person being run over by the tracks. It was so blunt. We also went and saw Agatha Christie’s play the Mouse Trap. Also excellent but I think I liked 39 Steps more.The two pics below are Hampton Court Palace.

June 16th: We went to Windsor Castle. Pretty awesome. It’s where the Queen lives. Of course, the part she lives in is restricted and we could not enter. Juan and I were discussing this while waiting for Daddyboy and mom to finish the tour. Her section is smaller than the whole thing but of course is by no means small. In referring to her sections of things, Juan said, “I guess it’s bigger than our house. But it’s all about porportions. It’s like if we could only use our one hall and two bedrooms . . . that would suck. That’s what it’s like for the Queen.” Ha ha. Juan and I make several comments about the Queen’s suffering throughout the trip. In Windsor is where we ate the most delicious item on the trip. It was this custerd danish thing but the bread had cinnamon in it. It was incredible and heaven to the mouth! Other favorite moment. Juan and I are walking down the street.

Juan: There is a Canadian. (I turn to see old woman with a hat containing a Canadian flag. We walk past her . . . ) I almost kissed her just now.

June 17th: Another travel day. We missed our flight to Germany. Not even joking. Dad read the time for our return trip. So, we missed our flight. We had to go and get a new one and pay extra money. But the people at the German airport were so pleasant. (Oh and security in Germany and England . . . so lax and nice). Once we got to Germany we had to take a few trains to get to Fussen. Really we just traveled all day. We did get to our Hotel Sonne though. Fancy hotel! The bathroom . . . one of the most amazing I have ever been in and I have been in several for anyone that knows me (wow that came off weird). We got robes and slippers and a big tv (of course, it was all in German but we mainly watched the World Cup anyway). Fabulous!

June 18th: The day we went to Neuschwanstein . . . my dream castle! The castle picture you saw at the beginning of my post. Gorgeous. Only thing that sucked was my period started right when our guided tour of the castle did. So I was super crampy and freaking out about protection the whole time. Oh the joys of being a woman. Ah well . . . the castle . . . amazing! We also saw Schwangau too . . . not as pretty but nice (oh and the tour guide way better).

Anyway, dream come true. Holler! Oh for the record sparkling water is gross.

June 19th: Dad, mom and I explored the town of Fussen a little. We found this park that was just magical! It was slightly drizzling too which just added to the effect. It was seriously the most beautiful place. There were these ruins and I’ve just never felt so much as though I were in a fairytale.

Next, we headed to Munich. We went to the Nymphenburg Palace. Pretty cool. I helped a woman who only spoke German who was lost and earlier I spoke some German in a bakeri in Fussen. So, I did use some even though I am super rusty in the language.

June 20th: Happy Father’s Day! Which I am totally grateful for him and putting the whole trip together! We headed back to London. We stayed in an apartment which had a kitchen and dishes and stuff. We had no food though so it was weird when Daddyboy starting boiling water in the kitchen while we were preparing clues for the movie game. Mom asked what he was doing and he claimed he was making dinner. Next thing we know he is in the kitchen singing “Oh yum yum yum” next to his boiling water. We just figured he has finally lost it. i won the movie game just for the record.

June 21st: Our last day in London. We went to the British Museum and Traflager Square and then did some shopping. Last we went home and just read and watched the World Cup. Perfect.

June 22nd: We went home. The trip seemed shorter on the way back. Perhaps it was because I watched better movies/ shows and had a brilliant book to read (Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson). Over all, the trip was a huge success and I loved it. But I was glad to be back in my own bed. Did I find a man? no. But I did have a smile fling on one of our Underground trips. He moved his bag so I could sit next to him, smiling his cute British smile. And then when he got off he looked back over at me. Made eye contact and smiled again. Not much I know. But I felt pretty. I just wish I would have had the nerve to talk to him as we sat next to each other. My last picture is one of my favorite signs. Which I’m thinking my childhood best friend, Chelsea would enjoy the most for some reason. I just think it is funny.

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