This trip was so spur of the moment. I decided and planned to go for my birthday, which was only two weeks away. I was going through a lot in my personal life and I needed to just get away. After checking in with my cousin to see if I could crash at his place and getting confirmation, I went on British Airways and didn’t think twice about buying that ticket.
It was the best decision! It was an amazing ten days and I was finally able to add England to my list of traveled places, and I can also now say that I’ve been to that side of the world. Lol! Small thing for some folks but big for me as I usually only go to the Caribbean when I say I’m going overseas. My travel list isn’t all that long yet, but with my new outlook on life, it will be!
Being that I had never been there prior and I was traveling by myself, I took some necessary steps prior to my departure that I would advise to everyone. First off, I have a shitty mobile phone. It is a galaxy s6 edge plus and also the worst phone I’ve ever had, but with the money I paid for it, I have to make this shit work. If someone calls me it goes to voicemail and when I try I have to do it like three times before it actually connects. BUT, I can receive and make calls via WhatsApp, Facebook, and other wifi/data apps with no issue. So I went online and found a site called visitbritainshop.com. On this site I put in an order to rent a mobile wifi device which I would pick up at my terminal when I got to Heathrow. I had to make sure I was able to call and receive calls at all times. That and I wanted the same internet capabilities I had back home to share every special moment as they happened!
Although I got my device when I got to Heathrow, the site was not specific in stating that the name of the location where I was to pick it up in the airport was called “excess baggage point” as opposed to anything that said “visit great Britain shop”. I had to ask different airport workers who pointed me in different directions until I got to an airport worker that actually knew what I was asking for. I picked it up and made my way. VERY IMPORTANT – I booked it until the day that I was leaving and I had to be return it in all of the packaging at the airport at my departure terminal. If you forget, you’ll get a high penalty fee and other penalties until it is returned to the vendor.
I stayed in Hammersmith which I learned was in West London. First thing’s first, get my oyster card!
Just like how we have metro cards in NYC, they have this. So I got mine and hit dem streets!
You know I took my ass to the top in the front right? I had to do it! And the driver kept riding the damn sidewalk, which looked and felt crazy from up there! But it was fun!
I had to go check out Brixton, without a doubt. I always heard it was like East New York and with my Caribbean background, I wanted to see. And it is – to me. And just like Brooklyn, gentrification is happening there as well.
Almost everyone that goes to England flock to Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, the London Eye, etc. Not saying that all that isn’t great to see if you never have, but for some reason I was more interested in seeing rural England. Could be my Game of Thrones obsession (I know it isn’t all filmed there). Anyway, first stop – Stonehenge! That day they were about to have that solstice festival thing so I’m thinking that’s the reason it’s roped off as I thought I’d be able to walk up in there and take some pics. But I got shut all the way down! Still got some good ones though!
Next was Bath, England. I had to check out the roman baths. It was fascinating, but the pool in the picture was the only one that had much water in it. The others were mostly dried up or had a little trickle. But I was glad I went nonetheless.
I had fish and chips across from the museum at this restaurant called The Roman Baths Kitchen. It had comfortable outdoor seating so I went. I’ll be honest, I did not enjoy it. As soon as I cut the fish, the oil just started leaking out of it. I must have had two chips and said forget about it!
Last stop of the tour was in Stratford-upon-Avon AKA Shakespeare town. The group I was with was given a tour of his school with a little trip back in time as we went to a pretend class to experience school life during that era. Interesting!
The tour also went through an area called The Cotswolds where the houses were built with this Cotswold of stone with a certain kind of pattern. The tour was a drive through only so even though it was charming and pretty, I didn’t get any pics as I fell asleep and caught a glimpse as we were leaving. I saw these sights all in one day. I booked the “England in a Day” tour with Premium Tours and met at the meet up point which was at Victoria Station. Coming back they let me off close to where I was staying and I took and from there I took an Uber home.
The rest of my time was spent enjoying quality time with my family and indeed I did! From my cousin who hosted me cooking everyday, my other cousin took me to check out some restaurants (Poppy’s II & Nando’s) and to get a London-style kebab, to going to a Jamaican-style fish fry in this area called Thornton Heath, I ate well! I’m getting hungry thinking about that shit right now.
There was so much more I wanted to do but time would not allow. Also I did this trip unexpectedly but the next time – and there definitely will be a next time – I’ll definitely do them. I want to ride the Eurostar and check out Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. I also want to do a day trip over to Amsterdam. The Game of Thrones tour is definitely something I want to do as well. I saw the packages online and it looks exciting!
I have soooo much footage from this trip that I had to break it up. So in this post you saw some pictures and the next I’ll have the vlog video ready. You can also check out the pic video below. Enjoy and thanks for visiting MeeshMoves!