Tuesday before Thanksgiving


  • We woke up and took the coach from Cheltenham Spa to London’s Victoria Coach Station. From there we took ourselves and our stuff to the Aarden Hotel (see hotel photos). This was the base of our visit to London for the remaining three days. The Aarden Hotel was very close to the bus station–the man at the information desk told us it was going to be a 15 minute walk. In reality, it would have been 15 minutes if a traffic accident had happened in the middle of the street between us and the hotel and we’d been forced to walk around several extra blocks to get there.

See more Cheltenham Photos

  • We took advantage of Rail Europe prices before leaving for the UK to purchase Tube Passes, a one day pass for River Thames cruises, and a Gatwick Express pass so we could get to the airport on Friday.
  • After getting to the hotel and getting ourselves situated, we headed to pick up our tube passes and then took the tube over to the London Eye. The London Eye is the world’s largest Ferris Wheel, and immediately upon seeing the Eye, I was reminded of Robert Lawson’s book The Great Wheel — a children’s book on the Newbery Honor Roll. Oddly enough, I reread the book about a month ago, so it was fresh in my head.

See London Eye Photos

  • After taking the Eye, we wandered by the Westminster Abbey, and walked right in and toured the building. It was incredible, and the presence of so much history in once place makes America seem so young.
  • Tuesday evening we went and saw “F***ing Games,” a play at The Royal Court Theatre. The play was written by Grae Cleugh and directed by Dominic Cooke.
    • The web site promoted the play as follows:
      • “It’s just not realistic to expect one person to remain faithful to another. I mean it just doesn’t work, does it?”

        Terrence and Jonah have been together for ten years. Jude is young, good-looking and always chooses his boyfriends badly. So, when he brings round his latest, Danny, the games begin.

        F***ING GAMES is Grae Cleugh’s first play.

  • To be honest, I was pleasantly surprised at the play–it told a reasonable story, and was well acted. We both got irritated with Jonah at the end, and I was also very annoyed with Terrence, although I suppose I’ve known guys like Terrance and I’ve wanted to smack them around in real life. If you should chance upon a performance, I would see it–but I wouldn’t fly transatlantic just to see the play.

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