Ever vibrant!

London – no place like this city when it comes to diversity, history, promotion of democracy, legacy of evil and the staying power of the good. We took a ride in an iconic London cab with its high roof and chatted with the driver about the invasion of Uber. He was all about the loss of quality in life with cheap rides even though majority of people might not agree. Heathrow was a mess. We waited in the parking lot in the garage where the Uber driver was supposed to pick us up. He entered the garage but by the time we got out, it was more than an hour wait because there was some kind of a jam getting out. The Pakistani origin driver was lamenting about the level of corruption in his home country and life being so much better away from home. He mentioned many places to eat quoting dinners for three pounds in some Green Lane or park. We drove by the Wembley stadium from afar before reaching our hotel in the suburbs. We wouldn’t stay here long enough else we would have met the West Indian cricket team; we had to be satisfied to know that they get their own wireless network – makes sense. The lounge was great and served us for breakfast and lunches many days. The underground became a fascinating part of our lives for the next seven days. Each day I was getting my quota of movement per my Apple Watch. In fact I got the coveted three circles all the days. The trip to Madame Tussaud’s was incomplete with the blistering sun beating us down as we stood in the line to get in. London Eye was charming reminiscent of Mr. Bond and it was uneventful. Last time I read, the Eye had stopped due to a terror attack and people were stuck on the ride for over four hours. It is easy to miss the famous London Bridge for it is not what it is as seen generally. The Tower Bridge is what we see in the photos and people sing the London Bridge song thinking of the wrong bridge. The London Tower is indeed a haunted place – haunted with the numerous killings that happened there. In fact there is a Traitor’s gate through which traitors were brought into the towers. The tower – one of them – do hold the Kohinoor. Piccadilly, Trafalgar Square, Harrod’s, Oxford Circus – all exciting places to spend part of your evening with a plethora of restaurants. The Woodlands in Maryleboune was awesome, but the Woodlands near Trafalgar was so-so. The Masala zone – two of them we visited – were both awesome. Eating topped off at the historic Veeraswamy, a restaurant started much before Indian Independence and to this day is considered one of the top Indian restaurants in London. Make sure you have reservations. Windsor, Bath and Stonehenge were all fascinating. Opulence like you never want and have seen before. We strolled through the great hall where the knights are knighted and royalties treated to dinner on a table that can seat something over 100! I couldn’t visit the Lords’ cricket ground, but did visit the Parliament building. I can’t believe I was in the Lord’s chamber and the chamber of Commons where historic decision have been made including the declaration of independence of India. Capping it off was the day trip to Cambridge; we had to decide between this and Oxford. All in all, a fascinating trip to a vibrant city that has set the direction of history in the right direction over the past several decades!

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