Subject: Report on London
Hello Ziners

I came back yesterday from London where I spent a long weekend with my 13 y.o. son. Even if we are often together it's always a good thing to have some time between us alone, and doing it in London seemed just okay.

London was very wet, of course, but we enjoyed the town anyway. I just want to share some informations some of you could find useful.

Ryanair - The low-fare airline looks and sounds like any regular airline in economy class; you don't get any of the usually lousy food (but it's a two hour ride only) and you pay even for drinks, but it's just as safe and comfortable as anyone else. Stansted airport is a bit off hand, but it's new and easy to use, with very good security checks.

Chesham House Hotel - Close to Victoria Station, safe area and very well connected by tube and bus. Suggested by a Ziner, offered a double room with shared bathroom and English breakfast for 55 pounds per night. It had been more than 10 years since last time I had a shared bathroom, but I found the hotel clean and friendly. Our room needed urgent refurbishing though.

Imperial War Museum - I visited it in the 70's and it was a dusty display of objects and uniforms. Now it's an amazing collection of restored vehicles and airplanes hanging under a glass dome, and themed exhibitions with a lot of hands-on experiences for kids and adults (smell the stink of WWI poison gas, sleep in a cot digged into the wall of a trench, feel the weight of a steel helmet, listen to the sound of torpedoes on a sonar). It also has a chilling Holocaust exhibition.

Cabinet War Rooms - The free multilingual audioguide you get at the entrance takes you around these cramped basement rooms form where Churchill led his nation during the bombing of London. A fascinating experience with original sounds and voices.

The London Dungeon - All kids want to go there, for the creepy and gory scenes of plague, tortures and executions of British history. But the funny part are the acted scenes, with dressed characters playing the executioner, the judge, the policeman, the prostitute, all getting the public involved into a mock judgment full of hilarious comments or into the search for the real identity of Jack the Ripper.

Navajo Joe - American Southwestern cuisine in the heart of Covent Garden. Themed fancy decor, very good food but a bit pricey; for us who have spaghetti every day at home, a welcome break! Some of you will frown, but for us that's ethnic food :-)

Bye all

Paolo Trieste, Italy