London Calling

a day in London with a toddler

On our last Saturday in Europe we mustered all our dwindling energy and took the train from Reading into London for the day. It was easily the most exhausting day of our trip (and of these nine months of pregnancy), but I am so glad we did it. It was Ben’s (and Lincoln’s) first time in the city and it was so fun for me to explore it again with them.

We were pretty realistic about what we’d be able to fit in and so kept our agenda flexible with the Tower of London and the British Museum as our two main goals. I know there is so much more to see but this trip we opted to do more day trips around England instead of spending our time in the city (which worked out infinitely better with a toddler who napped well in the car).

A bit from our day (I didn’t take nearly as many pictures as I would have liked – although we do have video floating around somewhere I should get around to editing):

^We caught the train Reading to Paddington (did you know this is the most expensive stretch of train in the world?) and just bought the day passes so we could use the metro throughout our time in London. 
^It took FOREVER and a day to get to the Tower of London. I think from the time we boarded our train in Reading to the time we got off at the Tower of London station it was just over two hours (and the initial ride from Reading into London was only half an hour). It was a bit frustrating, but we made a pact at the beginning of the day that no matter what went wrong, this was our one day in London and we were going to have a great time.

We had to remind each other/ourselves of this pact more than a few times throughout the day.

^It is much easier for Ben to remember he’s having a great day when there’s ice cream in his hand 😉 This is after we’d grabbed lunch and wandered around the grounds for a bit but right before we went in and saw the crown jewels.

^There is so much to see in the Tower Complex and we walked around for hours. After going through the White Tower (where they trick you into walking flights and flights of stairs with no option of turning back), I was exhausted and Lincoln needed a break so we parked ourselves on the lawn for a bit to unwind. 
^The happiest I remember Lincoln being our whole trip was this afternoon of running around in the grass at the Tower of London 
^See what I mean? 
^I mostly sat on the grass and soaked up the rare treat of English sun while the boys chased each other around
^Another huge treat was meeting up, however briefly, with this lady and her husband who had just flown into London a few days before. We were roommates the year before I got married and I was so excited to have her meet little Lincoln. She could tell you the most embarrassing stories about those first two years of college….  (here’s some respectable pictures instead)

^After the Tower of London we took the tube over to the British Museum – at this point we were so exhausted we could have called it a day. There is also about a lifetime worth of things to see in this museum which was a bit overwhelming. Since we’ve been home I’ve been listening to a BBC broadcast telling the history of the world in 100 objects (all from the British Museum) and now I really want to go back again and see everything I’ve been learning about…

^We also got to meet up with another friend (and her unpictured husband 😉 so I spent most of my museum time hearing about her life in London and as a newlywed. After only an hour or so in the museum we headed for an afternoon snack and stopped to let Lincoln run around another park (he’s a trooper for mostly being stuck in that carrier all day – as is his father for carrying him the whole time). It was so fun for me to be able to introduce these dear friends who have known me for long before I was a wife or mother to this tiny little person Ben and I created. It was just a bonus that he happened to be in a good mood 🙂 

London, I’m sure we’ll be back. And hopefully with a bit more energy (read: not 34 weeks pregnant) and a bit more time 😉

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