Subject: Re: London in November
Hi Diana and fellow Ziners,

I couldn't agree more with Diana about visiting London off season.

I also recently returned from a week in London where we stayed for the third week of October. Although prepared for cool Autumn weather we actually were there during a rare "hot spell" with temperatures up to 70F some days. I had no plans at first to visit at this time but my youngest son had moved to London this past May and then I saw that British Air had some fantastic specials on. A close friend of mine had a nephew in London that was graduating at this same time so that was all we needed to convince us to go. So for $562 plus tax we flew from Vancouver, Canada to London for one week and that included 3 nights accommodation. The last 4 nights we stayed at her nephews flat.

During our week there we were able to see and do so much and as Diana said without the crowds of summer we could pack so much more in. My husband and I had been in London this summer about the same time as the bombings so it was quite a different London that we saw this time. One Sunday morning we took one of the "London Walks" that did a tour of Hampstead Heath, it was a beautiful morning and so wonderful to take this walk and learn so much about this area which is now where my son lives in a flat on Parliament Hill with a fabulous view over London. We watched as families flew their kites on Hampstead Heath, a real dream come true for me!

There is something about London that gets in your blood I think.We would often pick up a picnic lunch at Tescos or M&S which have a wonderful selection of "to go" foods and take in to the park. We also took in the theatre and had booked one of them through , it was a dinner and show for 20 pounds, a great deal. We saw "The Producers" which was very funny. Another night Barb saw Blood Brothers while I had my heart set on seeing Mary Poppins! It was indeed wonderful!

We also were lucky to see some Royalty while there, as we were coming up from Westminster Abbey we heard a band playing and upon coming to Horsequards Parade we saw the Royal carriages lined up along with all the other Royal Guards and band on Horseback. It turned out to be the whole Norwegian family and we were able to see them very close as they drove by in the carriages along with Princess Ann on their way to Buckingham palace.

One day we took the train out to Hampton Court palace and spent a wonderful day exploring there. We did the Museum of London, The Tate Modern and had time for a quick tour of Harrods, Selfridges and also the largest toy store, Hamleys I could go on and on and all this in just one week which I had not thought possible. I would not hesitate in "Popping" over for a week again as it all went so smoothly but for now it is back to work to try and save for the "next time"

Gail in a foggy Vancouver, B.C.