It’s the time of year again when our hearts long for far away places. Places where no one expects us to work. Places where the only question someone asks us is, “Straight up or on the rocks?”
My friend Sandy and I are dragging ourselves to the finish line of what will be approximately 8 straight months of work without a vacation in order to experience 10 days of vacation in London. At this point, it can’t come fast enough. In my excitement, I may just kiss the terrazzo floor of terminal D at DFW Airport good bye.
Heck, who am I kidding? I could be headed on a bus tour of drainage ditches and I’d be happily waving goodbye.
Luckily, London is WAY better than what I would settle for.
As we approach the 4 week countdown, I start to wonder what I’m going to wear and how much to pack. Then, I promise myself I won’t overpack again this year. I will be smart. I will be savvy.
I will be standing in the rain wondering why I didn’t bring a raincoat. (Hello? It’s England.)
Anyway, we have devised what equates to a brilliant plan of action. And by WE, I mean Sandy. I am the one who pays scandalously little attention to the planning portion, then shows up and is surprised by what we’re doing, or irritated that it’s on the agenda for 7 AM. It’s called passive aggressive tourism. Luckily, Sandy knows if she just hands me a glass of wine, I’ll recover instantly and tag merrily along. After all, her plans are typically without flaw. Except that ONE TIME IN WALES WHEN SHE DIDN’T LET ME EAT UNTIL 3:00 IN THE AFTERNOON. But I’m over that and I trust her completely. (Note to self: pack peanut butter crackers.)
We (Sandy) have some tours scheduled via guide. Other sites we will venture to on our own. As we tend to do, we also have set aside time to do absolutely nothing but wander about. We are hoping to be able to worm our way around the crowds of August, which are infamous. Knowing our luck, things could go either way. It will either be a case of perfect timing and we will slip in and out of the palaces and museums like a couple of crocs through the Everglades, or we will spend each day elbow to elbow with that most dreaded of living creatures – the tourist. (Nevermind that we’re tourists too. We prefer to consider ourselves favored and charming guests.) That’s why we intend to enter each palace with a royal wave and perhaps a “Ta Dah!”
There are (of course) plans afoot to attend a performance at the Globe. I believe the official “stalking of the actors” occurs immediately afterward at The Swan.
Also on the agenda are visits to Avebury, Glastonbury and Stonehenge, which should do much to slake our mystical and Arthurian thirsts. Hampton Court, The Tower, Kensington, etc. will be must-sees as well. I will NOT be happy unless I see a ghost of either Henry VIII or Katherine Parr. Preferably both. Together. Chasing each other through the halls.
Over the next few weeks I’ll be delving into the tours planned and other attractions in a bit more detail. That way I may actually KNOW what I’m in for, rather than guessing.
Until then, another day, another few inches toward the finish line.