Monday, May 15, 2023

England Day 1 and Day 2 London and Windsor

 Only ten months after the Jubilee, I flew back to England for 10 days - and of course the Coronation.  I arrived on April 28 traveling overnight from Dulles to Heathrow on British Airways.  I booked the same Air BnB in Walthamstow.   

As this was a shorter visit, I planned only two day trips to Windsor and Arundel, although there would be a third day trip on my final day in England.

Catching up as we wait for our luggage

A friend from San Francisco was also traveling to London for the Coronation.  She was traveling from San Francisco and our flights were scheduled to arrive at Heathrow at the same time.  Our luggage was on Carousels 3 and 4.  

ce a

Plans were underway for the Coronation procession on the Mall to the Abbey. A part of Green Park was already closed as it was being set up for the international media.     The government published guidance for attending the procession.  From the start, it was misleading and confusing.  The guidance stated that the viewing areas would not be open until 6 a.m. on Saturday morning (May 6).  This gave the impression that camping would not be allowed on the Mall.   I noticed a group of tents already set up on the Mall on April 28, a week before the Coronation.

I was able to stop into the Buckingham Palace shop where I bought a few Coronation items including the Christmas ornament.  I was also amused by two people, dressed in Georgian costumes, who wandered into the shop.   

This is Zachary Pinsent who has worn historically accurate (usually Regency) since age 14. He is a bespoke tailor who specializes in historical dress

The Mall with the Flags of all the realms

After dinner, I headed back to Walthamstow, a hot shower and bed as I was getting up at 8 to catch a train to Windsor.

My Air BnB is across from the Wetlands.   These geese and their goslings were out and about when I left the house.

Windsor is all decked out for the Coronation.  

A beautiful sunny day.  A bank holiday weekend - and Windsor was filled with tourists.  This was the first line I ever had to stand in to purchase a ticket.  While in line, I accessed the ticket sales on the official website, but it took ages to get through.  I was able to go to the purchased ticket line even though I had not yet received the confirmation email ... but the lady at the register was able to find the ticket -- and she said, you have been here before!

With T-Mobile, I do not have data roaming charges which means I can use my phone while abroad, apart from making and receiving phones, which is why I use WhatsApp for overseas calling.

Now the walk to the State Apartments.   This is a robotic lawn mower.   

Tulips everywhere

Seriously crowded, but no special Coronation exhibit.  I stopped in front of the Malachite Urn which was too heavy to be removed at the time of the 1992 fire. It suffered damage during the fire.  One of the docents let me past the rope so I could see the repairs (to the cracks) up close.   Just me.   I was thrilled. 
I was unable to take photographs inside

After leaving the State Rooms,  I popped into one of the shops and then got in line for St. George's Chapel -- and the lines were long.   People want to pay their respects to Queen Elizabeth II.  Finally inside the chapel -- you can stop for a few seconds in front of the vault where the late Queen is buried with her husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh and her parents, King George VI & Queen Elizabeth.  Princess Margaret's ashes are also in this vault.  You were allowed to step back and stand longer, which I did.  I also talked to one of the chapel's staff, asking about the flowers in the vault.  Flowers are not normally allowed. This large bouquet of Queen Elizabeth roses appeared on the late queen's birthday (April 26) and probably came from the family.  In other words, no one at the Chapel said no to the request.

Time to eat.   I decided to have lunch outside at the Clarence Brasserie and Tea Room.  I chose the Avocado and Bacon salad and a Coke.  Delicious.

Now revitalized, I decided to walk down High Street to the Long Walk, where I had camped out for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's wedding.   Everyone was out and about.  I used my long lens (400mm) -- the statue of George III is a mile from the Castle....   I have walked the distance,  but not this time.

Frogmore Cottage - with my long lens

Walked back up High Street and did a bit of retail therapy on Peascod, including the purchase of Coronation PJs -- I was interested in top, a t-shirt which shows a King Charles Spaniel and a Jack Russell Terrier.   Very cute

A bit of construction on the Castle.   Victoria is keeping her eye on it.

 A few seconds without people.

A nice pub in Windsor.  I have eaten here several times.  I chose the scampi and chips and a glass of Pimms.  Make that two glasses.


After dinner headed down toward the River Thames to the bridge that crosses to Eton.

Prince Christian Victor of Schleswig-Holstein, grandson of Queen Victoria.

Back to Windsor and Eton Central for the train to Slough, and then to Paddington

My favorite of all the Coronation posters.

Several of us jumped on the first car at Slough to Paddington ... we decided to remain in First Class, but no train officials came through.


Next stop:  Day 3 Arundel Castle

If you liked this post, perhaps you can buy me a latte

On the train platform at Slough, I noticed a Louisville Slugger bag.   I met three young women who are playing developmental baseball in the UK.  They were coming from playing a doubleheader.  They won both games. They play for a team for the Belles.  We had a lovely chat ...  Talkin' baseball in Slough.


Brent said...

Gosh you were busy on this visit !

Christina O. said...

This is what I was hoping for, Marlene! I admire your photojournalism skills.

glasgowskin said...

Hi. The guy in the Regency clothes is Zack Pinsent. He wears historical dress every single day - his website:

Cheers, Sean

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

a Friend told me this yesterday ... I need to caption the photo