Monday, 17 January 2011

Big City Vibe

This weekend I visited London with my husband and youngest child. The reason for this visit was my little boys seventh birthday. When asked whether he wanted a party in one of these organised play centres or a trip to London to see the Natural History Museum, he chose the museum.

I booked a cheap and cheerful hotel and we travelled down Saturday morning. The hotel allowed us to book in early and the man at the counter was very helpful in explaining which bus we needed and then which tube line for the museums.

So we set off. It is at this point that I have to say, I started to love the weekend, London and the ease of travelling about. A bus was arriving at the bus stop just as we were and the tube was sat waiting for us when we got to the tube station. I absolutely loved the whole feel of the big city busy. Transport is regular and often. People are moving about rapidly knowing where they are going. Public transport is used as the mode of transport. People use it to go to work. It's a must have. Really, I know this may sound mad, but buses here run irregularly and I have an hours drive to work each day. I'm contributing heavily to global warming yet here is a city where most people don't drive!

The promptness with which we boarded the bus and tube train wasn't just luck either. It was as equally simple on the return journey, even though I'm loath to admit, we got on the wrong train twice! But due to an all day tube pass and my thorough enjoyment of the experience, it really wasn't an issue. We even did it all again on Sunday with the same outcome. No hanging about waiting. If public transport was that good up here then I would use it.

I really soaked up the whole big city vibe. I loved people watching. The tube is positively aglow with advertisements for technology. People with earphones plugged into their heads and everyone with a phone in their hand. People reading books. I even saw an oriental book being read with the writing going the wrong way down the page! I loved watching the similarities and the differences between people. I loved the buskers in the tube walking tunnel areas (I'm unsure what they're called) I loved the architecture of the buildings. As my husband said, you see it on the television, its strange to be walking in it.

The Natural History museum was simply stunning. Outside and in. The science museum was brilliant. I spent the weekend feeling.... Well just feeling. Soaking it all in. My son loved the museums and the tube and we are planning on doing it all again but going down earlier, Friday night instead of Saturday morning.

I think there's a secret city girl hiding in here somewhere.


  1. what a great idea! My daughter is turning seven in Februrary and I'm really not looking forward to a kids party so maybe I'll give her the choice between that and a day at a museum in Paris. What a lovely city and it sounds like you've got plenty of material for a new writing project..:)!

  2. It worked out really well. He had mentioned wanting to see the museum towards the end of last year so I just gave him the choice. Lucky for me he chose a trip to the capital! :)

    It really was a stunning place and a great weekend. Much better than a children's party. Fingers crossed for yours then :)