Thursday, March 19, 2015

Portobello Road

Sorry for the posting delay, I lost my reading glasses and needed to order new ones. Fortunately, I'd scanned my new preseciption into my phone before leaving Vegas. But, even more fortunately, the local SpecsSavers was having a two for one sale. So now I have an extra pair in case I lose one again, and together they were cheaper than one pair in the States. Gotta love that strong dollar. However, I am still bummed at losing my favorite cat eye glasses. And the earbud cover for my wireless headphones, though I have a slightly less optimal repacement for that, as well.
We are covering so much ground, so quickly, I am having a very difficult time keeping track of my stuff. And I am well aware that I have way too much stuff, but I can't decide what I want to part with. I guess the Universe is just helping me with that. sigh.
Anyway, on to the travels. I have a bunch stored up, so the posts will be coming as quickly as I have time to write them. First up, as you will have guessed from the title, is Portobello road.
Martha was interested in seeing the Notting Hill and Portobello Road area, so that was the plan for our last full day together. Unfortunately, another all nighter for me and a still painful shoulder keeping her up in the middle of the night meant that we got a really, really late start.
We had a choice of catching the tube at our local station and switching one stop down, or just walking to the stop where we could go nonstop. We like seeing the sights as we walk, so we chose the second option and weren't disappointed.
There were so many interesting buildings. We love turrets.
And the lovely white stone buildings that are common, but still special.
Cool, unexpected little inviting places to hang out.
And just general neighborhood sights. Almost everywhere you turn, is ssomething just really nice to look at.

Turned out, the tube was so crowded with what looked like workers leaving early on a Friday afternoon, that Martha got a full blown claustrophobic attack, so we exited after just a stop or two to head back above ground.
It shouldn't have been difficult to switch to a bus from where we were at Oxford Circus, but the Underground agent wasn't as up on bus schedules as train info, which is understandable. But it meant that we were a bit off track when we realized the bus she told us to take wasn't actually going to Notting Hill. Google Maps just automatically showed us subway instructions and the official Transport for London website was giving us much more complex instructions than the helpful official who told us to just go straight to Marble Arch and we could get one there.
We still weren't home free, though, because we passed up the actual stop and went to where the buses were "resting" at the Marble Arch. We finally got it right, but the whole thing seemed unnecessarily complicated. It just didn't seem to need to be that difficult, since we are both pretty good at figuring out public transportation.
What all of this is leading to is that we got to Portobello road just as it was getting dark and everyone was closing up. Oh well. We will hit it again on the back end of the trip. And it was easier coming back, because rush hour was over by then, and we just jumped back on the tube. But we still got to see some interesting things.
Some of the stalls were very much like what we see in any other tourist destinations.

But the Easter Bunnies were a little different than what we'd ever seen before.
We were, indeed, in Notting Hill.
And Ginstitute is a thing, which I thought was pretty cool.
But one of the most interesting, and delightful, sights we came across was this Allsaints store.
Those shelves are full of old Singer sewing machines.
So, even though we were there for only a short time, we did enjoy Portobello Road. Martha left the next day, and I know she put some photos up on Facebook, but I am going to try and set her up with a blog as well. It's just that time keeps flying the hell away from us. But we are managing to fill it with remarkable things, so no complaints. Back soon with Soho, museums and a Tardis!

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