Husband and I finally had a long awaited trip away to London, just him and me. We had a lovely week away, just trying not to think about anything that worried us and to just enjoy ourselves.
We decided to stay in a bed and breakfast in the Bayswater area, which came with a hot and cold breakfast buffet. That way we could have a generous breakfast, a snack for lunch (mainly consisting of croissants and fruit from said buffet, squirreled away in Husband’s rucksack…) and there were a lot of nice local restaurants where we could have dinner.
We got the coach down to London and then the tube to where we were staying. Once checked in Husband spent the afternoon resting before we went out and had dinner at my favourite Chinese place. We shared half a barbequed duck, I had fried rice with shrimps and Husband had roast pork, rice and vegetables. Delicious.
After a lovely, leisurely breakfast, we went to Westminster Pier for our guided tour on the river, followed by a ride on the London Eye. We decided to go with both as a single for the Eye cost £25, but a combo ticket for the guided tour and entrance to the Eye cost £30, so a no-brainer!
The boat ride was very informative, but I secretly wished we had booked it for another day, as it was so windy we both sat there huddled together and with my teeth chattering.
Afterwards Husband wanted to look at weird and wonderful clothes, so we headed to Camden. He did not find anything he liked but enjoyed exploring the area. I found a dress however!
We then went to Hamley’s and while Husband could see that it was a huge and amazing toy store and why it would be famous, he was disappointed with the lack of Star Wars toys.
Having browsed all the floors of the shop we were both worn out, so decided to go to a quiet Italian restaurant for dinner before heading home.
After having our lovely breakfast, Husband rested for a bit while I checked my emails, before we went out to the Sky Garden.
It’s a garden space on top of a building in London colloquially known as the Walkie-Talkie due to its shape. Entry is free but you have to book in advance online, and you get an hour to stay up there before you need to go.
Security is tight there, you go through an airport-style metal detector and your bags and coats are x-rayed before you are allowed into the turbolift. It takes you up to floor 35 in six (!) seconds.
There are several bars and restaurants up there you can eat and drink at but as one main cost £28(!) we decided to enjoy our time up there and then go find somewhere to eat afterwards.
Husband was still hankering for Star Wars stuff, so we went to Forbidden Planet and spent an hour browsing there. I had several presents I had to buy so we then went to Primark – naturally I found some things for myself, to replace some worn out clothes at home. Since I started my new job I have become conscious that many of the things I would wear to work in the past are not appropriate for new job, so I am gradually phasing out the most worn pieces.
We decided to go to the cinema in the evening. I suddenly had a brainwave – surely I can use my Tesco Clubcard vouchers to get us Cineworld tokens? I had a look and sure enough, they would be valid for London cinemas as well. So we went to see Alita: Battle Angel at the Cineworld at the O2.
Valentine’s Day! The weather was beautiful, sunny and most importantly, not as windy as when we went on our boat tour on Tuesday.
So we decided to take the Tube to North Greenwich and take the Emirates Cable Car over to the Victoria Docks stop.
It was a lovely ride, our only regret was not buying a return as we would have enjoyed it much more if we had stayed on longer.
We then spent the rest of the afternoon in Harrods, marvelling at how other people live. Husband especially enjoyed the Egyptian room, and the superfoods salad he ordered when we stopped for lunch in their cafe.
In the evening, we went back to my favourite Chinese place. I had my lovely duck and fried rice, Husband however decided to have this:
We had a wonderful time away.
It was so nice and relaxing to just be, to not have to think about doing anything.
Like breakfast for instance. I didn’t have to buy the food, prepare it or wash up. I could just appear at breakfast, have whatever I wanted, and then swan off again. Return to our room to find the bed made.
I booked our B and B through Booking.com to get the cashback, and we travelled to London and back using Megabus, so it cost us £21 for a return for us both. I got cashback for this as well. While in London, I still looked out for and found jobs for the JobSpotter app and also got a freebie through Shopmium. So doing some frugal things and squirreling away, while enjoying ourselves, much to Husband’s frustration.
Deep down, he must appreciate it. I got us two meal deals to take on the coach back using my M&S gift card. As we left the store, I explained how we got it for free (Apply for M&S Bank account, get £125 M&S gift card, which is topped up with £5 every month if you keep your balance above a certain amount and have two Direct Debits go out of the account, spend in any M&S store and online).
He looked at me and said ‘that’s why I married you’. I said ‘how come?’ He explained that it’s because I’m so frugal with money.
Then he proceeded to say ‘if you were a dragon, you would be sitting on a hoard of treasure.’
I feel that’s very high praise. Treasure or no, I don’t mind being a dragon ^_^