I was anticipating blogging about my reunion with my parents tonight, while they watched over my shoulder and either pestered me about what I was writing (mom) or pestering me about going to bed (mom).
This, however, was not to be the day of our reunion. My mom was paranoid that her flight to Chicago would be delayed by rain, but they never even made it that far. They were prevented from leaving KC due to technical difficulties. I didn’t even hear a word about this til an hour before they were due in, when I was literally departing to go to Heathrow and meet them. Since Heathrow doesn’t have wifi, I am SO glad I got the message in time.
Situations like this are funny because they make me realize exactly how much I am like my family, and how lucky I am for that. The fabulous Jolie was there to witness this. When I heard that my parents would be arriving the next morning, my reaction was, “I’ll stay at the hotel by myself tonight!” When David told me I was supposed to meet them at Heathrow at 7:50 AM, Jolie asked why. “So we can go straight to Stonehenge, probably.” I said. “Won’t they want to rest?” My parents won’t give up precious London time! What about luggage? In the back of the rental car.
About 5 minutes later, my brother David (through whom I was communicating) told me literally that exact plan.
I love those guys. Can’t wait to see them in the morning.
Today was a pretty crazy day. I moved myself out of my flat in Brighton. I had more luggage than when I came. Even the cab driver struggled to lift my largest bag into the trunk of the car, and the combined weight of my other bags is probably equivalent to that. I think my shoulders are bruised from the weight.
Alice was at the house this morning, thankfully. I would have been so sad not to have had a proper goodbye. I left her and Alec some drawings, which they have probably found by now. I don’t know. It’s just weird that it’s over, and very sad. It was hard to say goodbye.
Neither my phone nor Alice’s was able to connect to the phone network. I think something must have gone wrong with the cell tower. This meant I couldn’t call a cab, so I had to walk to the nearest taxi stand, take it back to my house to get my bags, and then go to the station.
I was only delayed by about a half hour. I was hoping to meet one last friend at the train station to say goodbye, but James and I were both so delayed it didn’t end up working out. It’s sad. No one will ever call me “Poppins” again.
I took the train to London Bridge, because it has ramps (rather than stairs). Jolie met me there and we made it on the train back to her house with seconds to spare. She is truly a saint for keeping my luggage for me. I honestly don’t know what I would do without her.
The two bags I had to keep with me are nothing to sneeze at. The one I plan on living with for the next month is 19 lbs heavier at the moment than it will be. My laptop is a monster. I am so glad my parents agreed to take that back for me too. Once I lose that, I’ll be fine.
The bag my parents are taking home for me is small, but packed so densely that it’s also pretty heavy. Jolie and I decided that, if we were to enjoy our afternoon in London, we would have to ditch these. We set off to find the hotel. Even if I couldn’t check in now, they would certainly keep them for me.
It took us a few hours to get there. We misread the directions and took a slight detour. When we did actually arrive, the hotel seemed very fancy. There’s even a pool, but I haven’t figured out yet if you have to pay extra to use it. You never know with these English hotels. Free wifi is only in the lobby.
It was nearly 4:00 by that point and I hadn’t eaten since I woke up. Jolie took me to Yo! Sushi… And oh my gosh. First, I love sushi. Always. But it gets better. This is the kind of thing I’ve only seen in movies, where the sushi comes around all the tables on a sleek conveyor belt and you just take what you want.
It was fabulous and so exciting. And it meant, as hungry as we were, we didn’t have to wait for food to be prepared. Win-win! I wish I’d discovered it earlier. Apparently it’s a pretty common chain. I would have loved to go there again. I might try to talk my parents into it… I don’t even know if they like sushi.
After this, we went and tested temper mattresses. Jolie needs a new one for her guest bedroom. It was so hard not to have a little siesta right then and there, after our enormous (and enormously satisfying) lunch.
After this, we just strolled around Oxford Street, China Town, and Covent Garden. We stopped in a pub to get some soda and use the loo, and met two funny English blokes. We had to get some makeup shopping before the stores closed, but we promised to come back for a drink later on… Even though they asked Jolie if she was my mother. Men are dumb.
Unfortunately, MAC was already closed. So, we went to Pixi instead. Love Pixi, it’s so great. Jolie treated me to a palette full of fun, summery eyeshadow colors and a lipstick that got us a free gift bag. The gift was really great. Two more eyeshadow palettes, a bunch of nail polish, eyeshadow primer… She took one palette for her collection, and the rest of it is coming home with me! It’s like getting a new toy, I am SO excited to play with it. It’s all just so beautiful!
We also talked a lot about Anne Hathaway. I am considering a haircut.
We went back to that pub, and our friends were still there. They had had a bit to drink by that point, and were on the fine line between being amicably obnoxious and just being annoying. Harmless either way, though. It was fun to meet new people and have a chat for a while.
We had cupcakes and coffee after this. The weather has just been so amazingly beautiful all day. We sat outside and enjoyed it.
The rest of the evening we strolled and chatted and had a wonderful time. I love being in London, and always have the most splendid time with Jolie. When I we were at the tube station where I was supposed to depart for Heathrow, I got the news about my parents flight.
So tonight I’m staying alone in a gorgeous hotel. There’s only one bed in the room (thanks, mom and dad) so after tonight I know where I will be. The room is large, like American sized, and super clean… So of all the places to sleep on the floor, this won’t be too bad. I just have to enjoy tonight.
Love Actually will have to wait for tomorrow.