From National Gallery – looking over Trafalgar Square towards Big Ben. No more pigeons!!
A more social week than I was planning – friends from Korea in town for a night, then a second night,a big soccer game, and Sharon visiting for the weekend. And the US election which generated a lot of conversation which can be summed up in a response I heard several times when I said I voted for a 3rd party – “There was another choice? How did they not win or we even hear of this?” Hard to explain to people how locked in the two party system.
Plan was for Sharon to land Friday morning and she could recover and we would meet my friends for the England – Scotland WC qualifier. But her plane had mechanical issues and they substituted a smaller plane, so she didn’t make the cut with a frequent flier ticket – second time in last 3 mths this has happened to her. Thus I had to sell her ticket to a friend of a friend of a friend and it worked how great. Unbelievable atmosphere – playing the oldest international rivalry in football history on the most solemn English holiday and 25% of Wembley was reserved for Scottish supporters – mostly wearing kilts and raising hell all day throughout town leading up to the game. Although most fans were not there to fight – some wore and some guys about 10 rows back from US ended up on the internet feeds of local papers. To top it off – of course gambling is allowed with the sport book at the stadium and I turned 20 into 86….
Left the game about 10 minutes early to beat traffic and the potential riot to meet up with Sharon who landed during the game on her delayed flight – Uber didn’t work in the mayhem so as I walking into the train station, a sketchy guy on the street came up and said he had mini-cabs around the corner and arrived at my hotel an hour later (and only 10 minutes later than Sharon from the airport).
For the weekend, we revisited places we hadn’t been to in many years. Walking from Waterloo, went across the Thames to National Gallery, Piccadilly Circus, Oxford & Bond Street, Soho to Hyde Park Corner. Visited more shoestores than pubs and many Christmas decorations were up already – but after 10 miles walking we did need new shoes. National Gallery was a good reminder of how genius can come in many forms –
On Sunday, stayed outside of town near Shepperton and went to Hampton Court Palace – a primary home of Henry the XIII. Very sunny day but we never found the supermoon.