March 24, 2009

London Trip: Leaving home

As some are aware of, I'm currently on a weeks holiday in London. Yeayh! Going to London on a budget (means no major shopping) and without any real plan on what to do. Here's a slightly delayed travel report.

PS: The SD reader on my laptop isn't working after a recent Ubuntu update, so no pictures until I get home.

Leaving Tromsø

I left Tromsø on tuesday afternoon. Norwegian's flight directly to Stansted is rather practical. And cheap. I realised a few days before leaving that I would only have half an hour between landing at Stansted and catching the bus to London that would stop at Bow. If I missed it, I would have to wait another 110 minutes for the next bus. So I decided to travel only with hand luggage. It is fully possible to pack all you need on a trip in a single backpack small enough for carry-on. It did not however leave much room for buying anything in London. So my plan was to buy a bag in London for the return.

Already while waiting for the bus to Langnes I found out that the flight was delayed, so I would miss the Stansted bus anyhow, but it was too late to run back in and repack at that point.

The flight to Stansted was as eventful as flights can be. Which means nothing at all. Read a good portion of "Snow White and the seven samurai" by Tom Holt. Quite good light reading, but a bit jumpy storyline. Mind you, still only half done with it. Landed at Stansted the same 40 minutes late that we left Tromsø. Which was just as well, since I had forgotten how much hassle immigration can be. Turned out however that it was really smooth, but then I wasn't stressing either.

Had a burger at the airport Burger King. Apparently whoppers here are called "Angus" since they got scottish meat. :) Then 20 minutes before the bus was to leave, I went down to the bus station. Bad idea. Should have gone down there earlier, as the Terravision buses are apparently very popular. Might be something about a £9 price... The queue was already quite long. Result: I was one of the last 5-6 people to get on that bus. Phew! And the only one who needed the bus to stop at Bromley-by-Bow.

I'm staying at my friend Alison's place, and she met me at the bus stop with a helpful umbrella to hide from the inevitable London rain. The flat was just a few minute walk from the bus stop anyway, but a little shelter from the rain is helpful. Some plans were laid over a cup of tea as to what to do the next days, before it was time for sleep.

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