Travel Diary

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  • May 01, 2018 - History
  • May 02, 2018 - From City to Plane
  • May 03, 2018 - From Plane to City
  • May 04, 2018 - Day at the Museum
  • May 05, 2018 - Parks and Dancing
  • May 06, 2018 - Kew Gardens and a Show
  • May 07, 2018 - Ballet and a Bar
  • May 08, 2018 - Walking Tours
  • May 09, 2018 - Double Show Day
  • May 10, 2018 - Coming Home
  • May 11, 2018 - Reflections and Tips
  • May 01, 2018

    "You know, there are other cities to visit."

    Huh? What? I can't hear you over the siren's call of LONDON!

    It would be my sixth time to London. Some would wonder how I could keep returning to the same city. The answer is simple: there's an endless amount to see and do there. One never finishes with London. What also adds to this is the fact that I even enjoy returning to things I've done before.

    So of course when the opportunity came to go back again, I didn't hesitate. The cheap airfare was the catalyst. Way back in 2002, I paid about \$700 for a return trip there. A year later, a majestical deal of two-for-one made a round trip ticket \$312 on British Airways. But over time, and with rising fuel costs, prices somehow quadrupled or worse. A round trip ticket to Amsterdam cost me over \$1,600 in 2015. It was just so pricey for a while. However, I did get a \$412 round-trip ticket to Munich in 2009.

    And now we have Norwegian just completely bucking the trend and selling tickets at jaw-dropping prices. A round-trip ticket could be had for \$380 in May. Not a bad price or month to hit London. I did upgrade my seat and bag-check since I found it necessary to do so. But with credit card miles, my flight was then free. Why wouldn't I go back? ("We have to go back!" -- LOST)

    So I evangelize to a degree about not missing such opportunities. These prices probably won't last (though it's been a few years for Norwegian's great deals now). I do hate to see people miss the chance to see other parts of the world. Certainly, amusement parks visits are dandy, but witnessing life in other countries is just a unique and special treasure.

    That said, many do have valid excuses for not being able to take up such adventures. There's the whole job thing and if one is already living month to month, then even a cheap vacation is a financial hardship. Memories may be permanent, but debt can be too.

    Still, I did find one person able to come along. Allons-y!

    Planning

    Many an hour I sat in front of the computer reviewing websites and recommendations. What to see? What to do? Being a fan of theatre, I had to get in a few shows. I also enjoy returning to museums so those were on the list too. Parks? But of course! They're free, and a real treasure when the weather is nice. Soon, my whiteboard was full of sticky notes. (Odd, I know. All this high tech stuff, and I plan via sticky note.)

    As always, the countdown to the flight went by far too fast. I wasn't completely done planning. I never am. But time doesn't care.