March 13, 2012

A GRAND DAY OUT

Last Saturday Nick and I had a Grand Day Out.  We went on a bus trip to London.

London trip1

Gerry’s bus drops us off in the centre of London.

If you discount any trips to London for work or exams, the number of visits I have made for pleasure barely reaches double figures.  At the age of 60 this was probably only my 11th visit to our capital city.

The reason for this is simple.  It is only 148 miles from home to the city centre but getting there takes hours and is very expensive.  Just hopping on a train and going up to London for a day’s shopping is not an option for me living out in the sticks in Derbyshire so my last few visits have been on our friend Gerry’s bus.  Trips to London is what he does for a living and he does it very well. 

 London trip2

We dropped Lulu off at my dad’s for the day and picked the bus up just around the corner.  We made ourselves comfortable, coffee was served on the bus and it dropped us off in Grosvenor Square just after 12 o’clock. 

We then walked to Regent Street, glad to be able to stretch our legs and we arrived at our lunch destination bang on time for our reservation at 12.30.

London trip3

We saw this restaurant, The Living Room, which is just off Regent Street, on Masterchef earlier in the year.  Some of the competitors were given the task of cooking for lunch in the restaurant and we liked the look of the place so we booked it.

 London trip5

Looking forward to a good lunch.

We were not disappointed.  We treated ourselves to a glass of our favourite champagne (Castellane Rosé), a bottle of nice Chablis and a slap-up lunch.

London trip5a

London trip5b

 London trip5c London trip5d                   

 

 

 

 

 

We both had the scallops for starters and a fish main course.  The pudding menu was too tempting to resist so we both indulged.  Nick won.  He had black forest trifle and I had a salted caramel chocolate tart, mainly because it’s something we don’t cook at home and haven’t seen yet at the restaurants we usually go to in Derbyshire.  Salted chocolate desserts seem to be fashionable just now and I have to say it was not my favourite pudding – but it was nice and I ate every crumb !!  (It also had a slightly unfortunate appearance which I immediately spotted as a dog owner but I won’t go into detail !!…….)

London trip6This is the only “little girls room” I have ever come across with carpet on the walls !! 

After lunch we hopped in a taxi in Regent Street and headed off to our next destination, the main event of the day and something we had planned as a special treat months ago.

London trip8 Vincent and Flavia performing in Midnight Tango at the Aldwych Theatre.

We arrived at exactly the right time, as people were piling in and taking their seats.  Within minutes the curtain went up and the music started.

The show was superb.  We enjoyed every minute and were completely enthralled.  When Nick and I were taking ballroom dancing lessons many years ago, the tango was our favourite dance.  We were pretty rubbish at it but we did get our bronze medals for latin and ballroom so we have been enthusiasts ever since – watching rather than dancing these days.

London trip8a 

The Aldwych is one of those beautiful intimate theatres full of Victorian charm and grandeur.  We had wonderful seats in the dress circle that Gerry had got for us so we were not “up in the Gods” and craning our necks to see the show but we were definitely in heaven.

We emerged from the theatre into daylight and a very pleasant 17°C with time to take in some sights before we had to get back on the bus……….

31 comments:

  1. What a lovely day! You should get plenty of opportunities to put on your dancin' shoes in France - there are soirées dansantes regularly in la Touraine du Sud! Pauline

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pauline, we look forward to letting our hair down on the dancefloor......one day !!

      Delete
  2. What a superb day out! :-) That lunch looks fab although I spotted what you didn't mention the minute I saw the dessert photo ;-).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Antoinette, lunch was absolutely fab, even if the pud looked like a pile of......

      Delete
  3. A great day out! Was it to celebrate a special occasion or just a treat?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gaynor, it was just a treat, paid for partly by some Christmas money from parents.

      Delete
  4. I am jealous, I have seen very little of London other than the odd visit as a tourist! I would love to go to the theatre and have a good meal. Mind you I have seen even less of Paris and that is a lot closer! Diane

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Diane, we don't feel we're being too extravagent as our previous trip was probably about 5 years ago. Except that Nick goes every two weeks for work, which is not the same.
      On the other hand our last trip to Paris was about 15 years ago......it's time we did something about that.

      Delete
  5. Such an amazing adventure! All kinds of different things, and you did it in very timely fashion. Well done.

    Can I get you to organize my next outing, Jean? Bears are not brilliant at that sort of thing; not at all, actually.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bear, you need someone like Gerry to organise stuff for you, he's the expert !!

      Delete
  6. What fun! How long does it take to get from Derbyshire to the center of London on the bus? The nice thing is that you don't have a car to park when you get there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Walt, it takes just over three hours, door-to-door and it's completely relaxed and stress free. Unlike the train which is slightly quicker but often very stressful. And I would never contemplate going to central London by car.

      Delete
  7. What a treat, Jean. Lunch and a show has such a enjoyable sound and it looks like both were well worth it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Perpetua, it was well worth it !!

      Delete
  8. The best way to go to London -- for pleasure! Sounds like the perfect day out to me!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Broad, we always say we should do it more often and maybe we will.

      Delete
  9. Your day trip to London sounds fantastic. So nice to have a complete change for a day, doing city things you can't do at home, and then to be able to come home and sleep in your own bed.

    Jean, you have to bake that salted caramel chocolate tart and blog about it here. I love anything with salted caramel. I'll be waiting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Carolyn, you're so right, I always prefer to sleep in my own bed.
      And I might just have a go at a salted tart, just to make sure whether I like it or not !!

      Delete
  10. Here in Melbourne I drive through the city most days on the way to work. It sounds much easier than a trip through London however I still don't enjoy it. Last night I needed to drive back to the city and it was very pleasant on a balmy autumn night at 9.00pm.
    Like you though, its been some time since we went to the city socially.
    Sounds like you had a marvellous time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Leon, Nick goes to London for two days every two weeks and he finds it very hard work and exhausting. All he sees is the train, the tube, the office and a hotel room, which is no fun at all.

      Delete
  11. You two certainly know how to live it up!! What a wonderful day you had and lovely photos, too. A world away from LGP but then variety is the spice of life.

    I'm like you, Jean, in that my visits to London have been limited. I spent a couple of weekends there completing training as an Education Advocate for the National Autistic Society. This took place in the Clifford Chance building on Bank Street, so it was very nice! Other than that I've only been four or five times in my life.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Elizabeth, it's funny how a trip to London is such a treat for us northerners.

      Delete
  12. What a perfect day and evening. And even coffee on the bus!!! Love seeing all the great photos. But was disappointed that the dance video wasn't of you two!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mitch - our dancing was rather more pedestrian than these two !!

      Delete
  13. Blummin' eck! A reet grand day out was 'ad by all. Glad to share the memories of it with you via the blog and particularly liked the video at the end. I always admire singers, dancers and musicians as I am pants at all three. Loved the long leggedy lady dancer and her bare back. Oeer! And by pure chance a track on an album by Arthur H has just come on as I type. It's called the Dancer!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Phil, I'm sure you would just need a bit of practice !!

      Delete
    2. Me and my two left feet? :)

      Delete
  14. It sounds like a nice day out. I would have chosen the trifle :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Meredith, I wish I had too, as it happens !! But it looked like it might be quite easy to make at home.....

      Delete
  15. just had my break in the big city... lovely isnt it to feel urban albeit for 12 hours or so x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John, you're absolutely right, I couldn't live there but it was great to feel the buzz of the place for a day.

      Delete