Tea on Sunday was...ok. I purchased a groupon so it was only £15 pp and included champagne. The hotel it was in was a little dodgy...when I read it was in Hyde park, I was expecting beautiful views and a swanky atmosphere. Not really the case, as you can see the construction from the window. Side note- that is so the case for all of London, and probably every big city in EU. You have expectations of picturesque architecture and an unforgettable view, and really, all you get is construction covering it up. It's the price you pay for the city never looking rundown.
Anyways, we did love the tea, crumpets, finger sandwiches, desserts, and the champagne (that goes without saying!).
I order our groceries online. It is SO easy and I actually feel like it saves us money...if you spend over £100 ($150...are my conversions getting annoying? Just half what I say in pounds and add it to the full price in pounds to get the conversion to dollars. There, I'm done). You schedule your delivery time, and they bring it to your kitchen! I was worried that I ordered too much to fit into our small for Houston, but big for London fridge! And the water bottles... I'm so againt buying water bottles, but I love sparkling water and it goes flat in liters! Don't judge! We recycle them!
I'm kind of obsessed with the canals. Even if my route is longer, I will always choose to walk on the canal vs the street. I feel like it is so picturesque Europe. Also, I feel like it's my own hidden passage through the city. They are hard to find and usually deserted.
AND, we started planning vacations! I know I'm being super annoying and bratty with my first world problems, but I was getting really bummed about us not having any vacations purchased yet. Although we've only been here for a month, the late summer/ early fall is THE time to travel and I wanted to buy in advance so that we could get good deals. And what if we are only in Europe for a year? I don't want to waste any opportunities to experience beautiful places around the world that we may never have the chance to go to after this adventure. Thankfully my husband/ sugar daddy was on the same page as me, so we've been planning away these past few days (actually, I plan. He approves).
(images are from Pinterest)
First one is to York, a northern English city. Unlike London, it has been relatively untouched, especially from the world wars, so it still feels like you are stepping back in time. It was founded by Vikings thousands of years ago and is still enclosed in a brick wall. We are going late August for a long weekend. We thought it would be more economical than going anywhere else in Europe, but actually our train tickets were more expensive than our flights to Italy! Which leads me to...
For less than £60 pp, we could have gone to a play, a swanky 5* restaurant, or rode the London eye 3 times each. But no, for that amount, which includes luggage, we are flying to Italy! From the advice of all of my Facebook friends, we decided on cinque terre over my initial choice of the amalfi coast. We will fly into Genova, take an hour long train ride to cinque terre (haven't picked out where we will stay yet), and then hike the trails between the 5 ancient cities and hopefully enjoy the beaches, wine, and pesto (where it was founded). We will go in late September, and I cannot wait!
SO, I know that lots of y'all have been to cinque terre and I would LOVE to hear your advice on what to do, where to stay (want a view for less than €200 a night), where to eat, and all other tidbits that we should be aware of before going. I'm especially concerned about the train ride from Genova to cinque terre, since you can't purchase it in advance.
Ok, thanks for reading and sharing advice!