Monday, June 30, 2014

London 2014 Day 3

Before I talk about our third day in London, I want to give you my take on the London Pass. So what is it? It's an optional tourist's pass which allows you to get discounts and fast pass entry and other privileges around the city. You can view, ahead of time, what attractions and sites are included on the pass to decide if it's worth the cost to you. Not knowing exactly what we wanted to do in advance and also after reading some favorable reviews, we figured we better get the pass. 

In hindsight, we would have passed on the Pass. We just didn't end up doing many of the things featured on the pass.

The good side of it was that we made an effort to do more things on the pass than we probably would have and that the optional travel pass add-on we purchased was WELL worth it. The travel pass is a separate card that we used on the local buses (not the Big Bus Tour) and the metro. We used the heck out of those passes. 

So that's my two cents on the London Pass. But you can decide for yourself if it's worth it to you. Just do your research online before your trip and make sure ahead of time what you want to do and see. We're a little more laid back about pre-planning exact sites to see. We did research and made more of a wish list before we left then planned what we'd do each day as we had breakfast.

Speaking of breakfast, our mornings started off with a yummy little cup of caffe from the Krups version of the Nespresso machine in our hotel room kitchenette. Like a Keurig, you drop in little pods and hit the "go" button. We were lazy this third morning and slept kinda late, so we just sipped coffee and snacked on some things we had in our mini fridge and planned our day.

So the plan today: Portobello Market, Baker Street, do a little window shopping around Soho, then fish-n-chips for dinner. 

You may have noticed Jamie rocking' new 'do. She was in her element with the fashion in London and started to experiment with her hair too. The kid's got guts, I say. And she fit right in.

We noticed this placed called Wagamama the other day and thought it looked interesting. Sort of casual semi-fast-food Asian. So we decided to check it out for lunch. I tried these mushroom fritters encrusted with panko and served on a bed of wakame, a Japanese seaweed, with a chili sauce on the side. And of course, my favorite side: edamame. Delicious! And inexpensive. They have quite a vast menu, but they specialize in noodles. You can imagine my delight when I returned to the States and found a Wagamama cookbook at Barnes & Noble. Yay for me! I'll be testing out two recipes this week and will let you know how they are.

We popped into this very interesting shoe store for a few minutes after lunch. There wasn't a "normal" shoe in the place....

Of course, I looked at all the shoes like these in particular and thought to myself, "I could make these." Jamie and I both loved looking at all the fun styles.

This bunny-heeled shoe cracked me up!

And this one would be perfect for Miss Dyan Reaveley, don't you think?

After the window shopping, we hopped on the metro to Baker's Street.

Baker Street is special to Jamie and I...

221B Baker Street!  Sherlock! (We're huge fans.)

Had to snap a quickie outside the Beatles Store right next door. We didn't go inside. Just window shopped.

We were told that every Saturday Portobello Market holds one of the largest outdoor shopping experiences with a vast array of vendors selling everything from high-end antiques, vintage collectible books, clothing, jewelry, prepared foods, fresh produce, and so much more. So we had to check it out. We spent a couple of hours strolling the bustling market street. It was fantastic! I purchased a small printer's drawer (fashioned from a larger drawer, I think) which had the word London etched into the wood. I'm sure it will get worked into a project soon.

It was getting late and we were getting hungry (again) so we made our way back to the hotel to rest a bit (and for Jamie to make a wardrobe change) then we headed out for fish-n-chips at a local Wetherspoon pub (White Lion) for a late dinner. I had high hopes, but didn't find them to be extraordinary. I'm just not much of a deep-fried type of gal and these were pretty greasy. However, I did eat every last bit because they WERE good nonetheless. Oh! And I remembered that someone had messaged me and told me to make sure to put vinegar and salt on the chips and when I tried that, it was indeed delicious!

Jamie likes Boba tea, and there we plenty of little shops around to try out so we popped into this one and she got her sweet fix. 

Back to the hotel after another long, lovely day. Our evenings always consisted of updating our Facebook friends and Instagram followers about our trip, catching up on email, surfing the web and watching a little TV. The free wi-fi in the hotel was speedy and reliable (most of the time). You can see that Paul has dozed off on Jamie's bed over there. 

Stay tuned tomorrow when I share our visit to Buckingham Palace and lots of other common London sites. We packed it all in!


  1. Have loved seeing all your photos of your time in London, you certainly packed it in ! X

  2. Another fun post Annette, your darling daughter looks terrific and yes fits in perfectly in London ;0) My own DD is an Irregular Choice shoe fan as I am, the boxes those shoes come in are as wonderful as the shoes. I agree about the pass, there is so much to do in London you could only scatch the surface on a holiday. We have lived and worked nearby for over 50 years and still find new things. However an Oyster Card for public transport is a must; it covers buses, trains and the tube in and around London will save a huge amount of money and time. Looking forward to Day 4 xx

  3. More yummy food!! I'm enjoying the trip!

  4. What a wonderful, relaxed vibe your vacation has. Love that you decide each morning what you will do. What's up for day 4.

  5. So interesting to follow your exploits in London. Wetherspoons is a terrific chain for real ale and good value food, but i doubt that the fish and chips were freshly prepared as they would be in a fish and chip shop. I hope you'll give them another go. Ask for them open rather than wrapped, put your salt and vinegar on and eat them from the paper as you watch the world go by.

  6. Another great instalment and yes, Jamie looks like she fitted right in with that restyle. I'm so glad you enjoyed Wagamama. As another proud owner of the book I regularly make Cha Han and Yaki Soba for the hungry men in my life (that's a hubby and three teenage boys before anyone gets the wrong idea!!!) Those shoes looked divine though not so good for all that tube travel. Jenny x

  7. Your Jamie is adorable- and I dig her new do!
    And you look so durn cute in that Hello Kitty shirt! xoxo

  8. Annette! You are perfect! Love your smile!!!


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