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I Went Down to the ‘Dilly to Check Out the Scene

This week - Courtney blogs from Londontown! From our intrepid Blogger-in-the-Field:

Courtney here – on staff-assignment in London with special returning guest-blogger, Kelly!!!

All flights arrived on time at Heathrow. I turned on my walkie-talkie in the Customs Line and found everyone waiting for me at Baggage Re-Claim (one of my favorite Britishisms – after all, re-claim suggests it was yours before; at U.S. Baggage Claims, you could really be taking anyone’s luggage). Kelly (walkie-talkie name: ‘Sparrow‘) was extremely chipper given the traveling night, and we all did a great job today of not napping.

On the bullet from Heathrow to Paddington, a man’s case of presumably expensive red wine fell off of his suitcase and shattered. It smelled really good! I was waiting to see if anyone did what the peasants did in Victorian England and go lap up the spilled wine, but, alas, people just commented to themselves.

After luggage was dropped off, we headed to Covent Garden which was not open! After all, it was barely 9am. Luckily, there were buskers in the courtyard— unicycling and juggling-ones no less! I was, of course, mesmerized as juggling four balls at one time and riding my very own unicycle is near the top of my to-do list. They were riding the small unicycles and the six-foot high one while juggling pins. Another troupe-member was walking across a tight rope juggling three knives. A member of the Flying Wallendas he was not, but I have to give anyone credit for juggling knives.

Ate dinner (or whatever meal we’re supposed to be eating right now) at Mo’s Diner in Harrods—presumably the Americanized nickname of Mohammed Al-Fayed, owner of Harrods. Well, after that meal, we said ‘No Mo!!!!!’ For this supposedly American-inspired diner, we wound up paying $100 for four people to eat pasta, a BLT, a chili dog and a steak sandwich.

On tap for tomorrow: K & C are doing the town on their own: visiting and touring Wimbledon, lunch at Wagamama (thanks to Jeff P. for the suggestion), a Beatles Walking Tour: ‘In My Life’ (thanks to L.D. for this suggestion!), and the BBC Shop to visit Pudsey, the bear for the BBC Children in Need Charity.

Favorite sight so far: Grocery cart at Sainsbury’s had a sign which read: ‘Wonky wheels? Let us know!’

Pet Peeve: People who step off an escalator and don’t get out of the way. This runs rampant at Harrods.

Strangest sight: In the Harrods window, there’s a prototype credit card advertisement with the name ‘Mr. John M. Ashcroft’ on it. Does anyone know if this has anything to do with the U.S. attorney general?

Favorite Store Name So Far: Snappy Snaps (may edge out ‘Colonial One-Hour Photo’ in Williamsburg, Virginia for my favorite one-hour photo-developing shop name)

Can’t post pictures from here, but getting some good ones. If anyone has any other suggestions for restaurants, tours, etc., please let us know! [Ed. Note: hint, hint, you could use the message board to leave traveling tips…]

[Pogues lyrics=1]

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