Posts Tagged With: Royal Albert Hall

Visiting the Queen

Today we bid London good-bye.  As I sit at the breakfast table The Gore, London, England, Kensington I feel a tinge of sadness to leave this town, which I had not loved much in previous visits and to which I have warmed up considerably in this one.

 We have hardly done any touristy things but thought it necessary to at least visit Buckingham Palace before we leave.  Buckingham Palace, London, England, sign Our aim is to get there for the Changing of the Guard. We take the bus. Another sunny, beautiful day. We take a pathway in the Mall (not the shopping kind) towards it. The Mall, walkway, London, ENgland  The Victoria Memorial in front of the Palace is swarming with tourists.  London, England, Buckingham Palace  We’ll come back to it.  Let’s see the Changing of the Guard… Buckingham Palace, London, England  or not.  Today, there is no Changing of the Guard ceremony, but that doesn’t stop them from marching.  London, England, guards  guards, London, England  Buckingham Palace guards, England, London

Buckingham Palace

Back to The Victoria Memorial monument in front of Buckingham Palace, Queen Victoria, London, England dedicated to Queen Victoria, of course. Victoria Memorial, London, England

The monument has a nautical theme with mermaids included and did you know there were mermen?

I think the statues on the sides Victoria Memorial, London, England were donated by New Zealand.  From here I see the London Eye (does it see me?) London Eye, British flag  After I catch some rays, P1000639 we say farewell to Buckingham Palace BuckinghamPalace and since we are in the tourist mode, head out to Westminster Abbey where Big Ben and the London Eye get closer. BigBen.LondonEye  First a visit to the inner courtyard.  Westminster Abbey inner court, London, England    Westminster Abbey, London  But since we are running out of time (we have a train to catch) we must content ourselves with an outside view of the Abbey itself.  Westminster Abbey, London, England I realize, as well, that I have not photographed one iconic London phone booth, so I do so Iconic London phone booth, London, England before going into the very industrial-feel of the Westminster tube (aka: metro, subway). London metro, London tube WestminsterStation2

We return to the back alley of The Royal Albert Hall Royal Albert Hall back alley and take a last walk through the side street of the hotel, The Gore Hotel, London, England have a last cuppa (cup of tea) in the Green Room GoreLeave and go to the train station where we are taking the Eurostar Eurostar to Paris!

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Categories: Buckingham Palace, Kensington, London, Royal Albert Hall, The Mall, United Kingdom, Victoria Memorial, Westminster Abbey | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Clapton is Phenomenal the Second Time Around!

I look out the window and see the sun shining brightly.  Sunny Day, London, England, Queens Gate Road, KensingtonWe have a corner room so I go to the other side just to make sure and, indeed, the sun shines brightly.  Kensington, London, Queens Gate Road, sunny day

No time is spared to go out to enjoy the sun.  First the belly must be fed and in honor of the fact that we are to be tomorrow in lovely Paris we duck in an alley where there is a Parisian bistro, Cotê, to feed ourselves.  Love the little Coke bottle. Cote, parisian bistro in London, London, CokeMy plate was so good and the baguette gives me a taste of what Paris will offer.  chicken, salad, food, Cote, Parisian bistro in London, London

At the end of the alley on the main street is a TK Maxx – the equivalent of TJ Maxx in Los Angeles – and a Zara.  Two places I will hit since the psychiatrist I am portraying in Paris needs an outfit.  So, I, who rarely shop when in a foreign country, am doing so here.  The sizing is completely different but I manage to figure it out.  Done. Now off to Kensington Kensington Gardens, map, London, Kensigntonwhere Kensington Palace is. Kensington Palace, Kensington, London

The Brits are out in full force.  Rare are these incredibly beautiful and mild days.  Today is Sunday and what a gift it is for them to be free on a day like this. Tomorrow is a bank holiday too.  Kensington Gardens, Kensington, London park, London, England  Kensington Gardens, Kensington, London, England, gardens, sunny day

The Palace is shrouded in scaffolding so I’m concentrating on the gardens.

Kensington Gardens, London

The pathways are paved with shadows and so inviting.  garden arch, gardens, Kensington Gardens, London, England

The animals also attract my attention this duck is one of a select few chosen to reside in the fenced in pond. duck, Kensington Gardens, London, England

Kensington Gardens, pigeons, London, EnglandAnd these two pigeons seem to be pondering why that would be and stating that they could reside here if they so choose! 🙂 Or maybe they are just chilling.

We have to head back.  Time for the second Eric Clapton concert Eric Clapton is nearing.  And speaking of it, I am approaching it from an angle I had not seen it before.

Royal Albert Hall, RAH, London, England, Kensington     The Royal Albert Hall, London, England, concert venue, Kensington   Getting closer.   Royal Albert Hall, Kensington, London, England, concert venue

Majestic!  Royal Albert Hall, Kensington, concert, London, England

And here in all its glory!  Royal Albert Hall, Kensington, London, England, concert venue

A few more steps, into the hotel,London, Kensington, England up the stairs to change, The Gore Hotel, London, England, stairs back out – through a back alley- Royal Albert Hall, London, England, concert venue into the Royal Albert Hall again and inside the RAH!!

On Friday we had a sky view, today we have a choir view.  Royal Albert Hall, London, England, concert venue, RAH     Royal Albert Hall, London, England, Kensington, RAH

Eric Clapton's opening act  Gary Clark Jr., Eric’s (yeah, we are kinda close by now) opening act impressed me a lot on the first night.  GaryClarke  Today, closing night, he is just as amazing.

And then comes Eric Clapton!  “Hello Old Friend”

Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England

Eric Clapton, Hello Old Friend  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England

Close enough to capture his song list.  Follow along. Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England, song list

“Tears In Heaven”  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England

And “Cocaine”   Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England   Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England  People are on their feet.  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England

He leaves.  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England An empty stage remains.  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England  Until he returns.  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England

Gary Clark Jr. and Eric Clapton.

 Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England  Eric Clapton, Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall, London, England

WOW!!!!!!!!!

What a way for the last night in London to end.  The concert was even better tonight!

Paris tomorrow, only two hours away on the Eurostar.

Categories: Eric Clapton, Gary Clark Jr., Kensington, Kensington Gardens, Kensington Palace, London, Royal Albert Hall, United Kingdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Sing To Me Eric Clapton…

SuitcaseIt’s 3:30 am and the rooster sings.  My alarm clock is a rooster crowing.  I think it takes me back to times in my grandpa’s house where often I was awaken by one.  I have packed almost all night.  Fretted about just about everything.  Do I have my passport?  Should I take this dress?  How much of this and of that will fit?  Do I have my passport?   My permanent resident card?  I am now officially a Spaniard I have the passport to prove it!  Will it present problems?  I have a European Union passport! Passport Am I going to be okay?  More packing.  No I don’t need this much.  Is the suitcase too heavy?  Do I have my passport? Ay!!!

My flight leaves at 7:30 am.  Pick up by cab at 4:30 am.  Unreasonable times to be awake.  So worth it to be able to be London bound.    Dean’s flight leaves at 7:00 pm.  His is a direct flight.  Mine stops in Chicago.  Change plane to Berlin.  Change plane and airline to London.  I arrive a mere two hours before he does.

A cab picks us up.  The fare ends up being not the $50 or $60 they estimated but $75 plus tip.  Next time we take a car service.   We are both groggy.

My first flight is with American Airlines.  American  My next one with AirBerlin. Air BerlinEverything is self check now and I would rename it as all-confusing.  What happened to the civilized way of doing this?  But we get it all sorted out with help by personnel there for that purpose, and after over more than 40 minutes we are all set.  I get Priority Access thanks to my AA frequent flyer status.  I like.  They say that with Priority Access I can enter the Admirals Club.  Don’t believe them.  Dean gets a day-pass; I get a smile and “I’m sorry but either you pay or can’t come in.” Then it dawns on me that I have a Klout score of more than 55 which allows me to go in, right?  “Yes, mam.  Let’s see? ”  I show them, way higher… yay!  Buuuuut there is no barcode.  Huh?  Barcode.  Yes, please send to your phone.  So I try and it doesn’t happen.  Sorry mam.  Ugh!

So we go to breakfast in the only crappy sit down restaurant/bar in the terminal.  Have a lovely conversation with a couple returning from Kuai.  Then I head to my gate where Priority Access is once again a good thing and I board first.  But before that I say goodbye.  We will meet again in a Costa Coffee -ground floor, Terminal 4 in Heathrow.  Seems to me that this past year, and even the one before has been a whirlwind of departures and arrivals.  Sadness and joy, laced and inevitable interconnected.

And what does all this have to do with Eric Clapton?  What awaits us in London is two nights of Eric Clapton at the Royal Albert Hall along with many other adventures which you and I will be taking together.  See you in London!

Categories: Ramblings | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

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