Ruth and I got a day to ourselves the other day – a full, actual “date” with no time interruptions, pagers, or constraints like our usual hangouts on the ship. It was bloody brilliant.
She took me to the Natural History Museum, which I probably wouldn’t have gone otherwise if she hadn’t taken me. It was amazing – the ornate interior made it look exactly like Hogwarts. I was most thrilled about the fact that the escalator up to the second floor had a large world encompassing it, so it paralleled the Death Star.
We failed at doing high tea together (horrible luck- the one spot that was recommended ended up being under renovation), so we polished off delicious pizza instead. I don’t know why I was skeptic about the food out here – everything is AMAZING and not even that pricey. In fact, most of it is comparable to Australia, if not slightly cheaper (thanks, Brexit?).
I dragged Ruth on an excursion to West Hampshire to get my tattoo (an outline of Hogwarts that I knew I had to get in London to add meaning), and it ended up taking 2.5 hrs rather than my estimated 15 min because the artist was actually amazing. Rather than using the crappy Pinterest image I brought, he completely redesigned the Hogwarts illustration and added his own style to make it pop, so I was thrilled.
And for 70 quid, it was far too cheap! We were also told that Bill Nighy and Helena Bonham Carter always walked past the street we were on (Mill Ln.), so this suburb on the outskirts of London wasn’t actually in the boonies after all.
She also lovingly treated me to a proper English dinner (sausage and mash) which was DIVINE – at a proper English pub. If there’s one thing I love about the UK, it’s the design and interior of every pub – they look so Victorian and historical and they all evoke their own personality. Very much different from bars in California.
Saying goodbye was extremely tough, since we’ll go another few months without seeing each other – and hopefully – work on another ship together in the future. We had looked forward to reuniting for so long, and we only got 2.5 days together- but better than nothing.
This is where I stood as I sadly waved goodbye at the train barricades while she went on her way back to Norwich, a 3-hrish train from central London: