Saturday, December 08, 2012

2012 Holiday To London-NYC-Niagara - Day Seven

Brekkie. Grabbed a 390 bus to Notting Hill Gate to visit the Portobello Market on Portobello Road. Arrived at 10am, after getting slightly lost and having to ask for directions, and it was already crowded. Lots of wondrous jewellery, silverware, shirts, toys and bric-a-brac. Couple of hours of pushing through the crowds and searching for stuff. Some quality items and bargains to be had. Bought some churros and spicy beef stew (yum) for lunch. Quite delicious. When it was time to go we headed out so that The Boy could buy a compass that he'd seen and wanted as a souvenir.

Caught another 390 and made very good time down Oxford Street as there were only buses and taxis using it. So good that the bus driver had to stop for a few minutes as he was ahead of schedule. Arrived at the hotel in plenty of time to change for the match at West Ham.

Walked to Goodge Street Station but it was closed for engineering works. Had to get to Euston Square Station instead which, thankfully, wasn't too far away. Quite a few Hammers fans on board and a few from Sunderland. Took a bit of working out whereabouts to enter the ground at Upton Park - the streets were lined with food and t-shirt vendors. And some God botherers. No bottles with caps allowed within the stadium.

Our seats were near the top of the stand and the view was great. To my left were some Bosnians, maybe, to our right were some locals (who weren't that interested in striking up a conversation despite a few efforts), behind us some gobbing-off locals who provided running commentary (complete with expletives) and next to them a group of Chinese who made silly sounds for the whole match and didn't seem to know what the rules are. Sunderland scored after nine minutes, after a poor defensive pass, and held the lead for 83 minutes against an attacking outfit who scored the equaliser in about the second minute of time added on. Phew! The crowd got into it and they had been subdued for much of the match. The Boy had to go to the loo at half time and the queue was huge. Didn't take long though.

 Visited the stadium store after the match as The Boy wanted a Hammers watch. The queue was longer than for the toilets! Grabbed a cheap burger, £1 instead of £3.50, on the way back to the tube station. The queue to enter the station was about 300m long even some 45 minutes after the match had finished. No trouble to get on the tube though. A policewoman offered to take our photo at the station - very nice of her. Changed trains at West Ham which offered another photo opportunity.

Following a late meal at Costa we took a long walk around Bloomsbury. Still busy and some of the buildings looked beautiful at night. Ended up in Soho and did some souvenir hunting. The realisation hit us that we were so close to Oxford Street from our hotel that walking wouldn't have been a problem. Lovely to walk around at night. Topped it off when a truck driver abuse a Merc driver for not knowing how to drive and blocked the road. The truckie showed him what to do to unblock the road - hilarious. Back at the hotel I booked train tickets to Cambridge and then onto Peterborough.

Photo Album Vol I
Photo Album Vol II
Photo Album Vol III
Photo Album Vol IV (Final)

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