Kensington Westminister Abbey

Howard Schultz had never visited London, and scheduling time in advance is often difficult in the construction industry. Projects start later than planned, and finish later than hoped. He was able to take off the day before and after Thanksgiving so we had a quick four-day visit. The first day, Thursday, was clear so we visited the London Eye, made a quick trip to the British Museum and had dinner in the Earl's Court Tavern in Kensington, the area where we stayed. Found that John Smith bitter wasn't too bad and learned about mushy peas.


I had booked the hotel through Virgin Vacations and we were upgraded to the NH Kensington when the original hotel was discovered to be overbooked. The Kensington had been refurbished and re-opened only a month before, and was very modern. Our room was on the top floor and included this great sitting area in the dormers seen under the rainbow. The clock was the display on the plasma TV. The center section of the bathroom mirror never fogged up. There was even a desk area, too.

Friday was drizzling but we took the Original Bus Tour, had lunch in Picadilly and learned that salads are much better in London than they used to be. Took the river tour at sunset and took the tube to Knightsbridge to visit Harrod's.


Saturday Anet went to Totnes and Howard went to the War Museum and Churchill's bunker. Sunday we took the train from Victoria Station to Dulwich and walked 15 minutes through the parks of the prosperous town to the Dulwich Picture Gallery to see a copy of the Mona Lisa which was thought to be the original for about 100 years. That afternoon we went to Evensong at Westminster Abbey at 3 p.m. It was the best part of the trip. Boys choir, like a sung Mass without the Eucharist. All in English (I guess the Anglicans started doing it in in English back in the days of Henry VII) and a sermon lashing out at George W. Bush that sounded sacriligeous, maybe even treasonous. Then I looked around and remembered that Thomas a Beckett was killed there for speaking out against the king. We left the next morning.