Wednesday, July 23, 2008

London: The Arrival of the Malaysian Bloggers

We almost didn't make it to London.

Our plane couldn't land in KLIA from Kuching as there was a thunderstorm, & we were low on fuel. So MAS rerouted south to Johor Bahru.

When we landed at KLIA, the ground crew brought us quickly to the connecting flight to London. We got onto the plane at 10am. It flew at 10.

The flight took about 13 hours, 4 movies, 2 meals, 2 glasses of wine to make us sleep, peanuts & a snack meal. We touched down at Heathrow at about 3.35pm London time.

As soon as we did that, we bought a topup pay-as-you-go tube card. It's called an Oyster card. In Hong Kong, they have a similar one called the Octopus card. Beats me why they like naming them after seafood.

Anyway, the tube ride took the both of us, 1 luggage, 1 duffle bag & 1 carry-on about an hour to reach King's Cross Station at Bloomsburry, Central London.

You see, Central London is divided into a few neighbourhoods.

So once you know what's there in those area worth seeing, you kinda know how to plan your stay there. The neighbourhoods which were worthwhile for us were very much the touristy areas like The West End (musicals, shopping, restaurants), Southbank (The London Eye, London Bridge), Westminister (Buckingham Palace & the royal family) & finally, the last but not Nee's least, Knightsbridge (Harrod's, Burburry).

Oh, aside from almost missing our plane, we also almost didn't have a place to stay on our first night. There was a big glitch in my internet booking & we had to rope in Nee's cousin in London to help find a place, which she did. And all that was done the night before we flew. WHEW, Thank you Sophia!

And we were glad that she did, cos she got us a really nice place just a stone's throw away from King's Cross Station. It's called The European Hotel. £68 per night with breakfast.

You might want to jot this down cos we realised that Argyle St. & Argyle Square had a lot of similar B&B hotels, and all of them were not in our travel guide.

B&B hotel rates in London range between £66-105 from the ones with/without sinks, toilets, or shower, & to the ones with everything. So if you're particular about having your very own private shower AND bathroom AND sink, get the ones with ENSUITE. Otherwise you might have to pee out the window & bath in the sink. Sorry, I'm still a bit imbalanced from the jet lag.

So, when you know which ones to book, everything will turn out quite beautifully. The shower & sink were there, albeit basic.

The toilet was ensuite alright, but somehow the toilet seat wasn't.

By the time we were checked in, we were dead tired. But the Fish & Chips were calling out to us, & we succumbed.

This was London after all.

If you don't try the Fish & Chips, then you'd better stay at home, in Malaysia.

It was about 15-16 hours after we left our homeland.

And now we're feeling very British, having British Fish & Chips on British soil.

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