Saturday, September 15, 2012

Jen's European Adventure: How it All Began




Long time, no talk.  I've just been traveling around the world the past month, starting with beautiful Southern Utah, then heading west to sunny California, and then crossing the seas to visit Europe and all of its wonders.

So now I'm here, ready to tell you about all of my adventures.

Ready, folks?

I spent 2 weeks in Europe with Josh and Ben, and oh my, it was amazing, but oh so crazy.  It all started in the Salt Lake airport where we had no idea the adventures that were in store for us.  We were waiting for our plane, when they announced that our flight was full, and that they would check our carry-ons for free.  We gladly checked them in, and we were so excited with our luck!  Our plane ended up being delayed, and we had a layover in Dallas, so that was a little nerve racking.  But we got to Dallas with time to spare, and all was well.  After 9 hours on our flight, sleeping so horribly, we landed in London ready to begin our adventures for the day.  We go to get our bags.  We wait and wait.  Everyone else from our flight has come and gone, and the same 7 bags are going around the conveyor belt.

Uh oh.

We talk to the baggage claim people, and find out that even though we made our flight, our bags didn't.  So they were sitting in Dallas, while we were stuck across the ocean in a different country with nothing but the clothes on our backs.  ...And Ben's 57 medications that he packed.  Our bags would come on the next flight, which would arrive the next morning at 8:30.

After getting our complimentary toiletries bag from the airline, we went to pick up our rental car.  We were on the tube for an hour and a half, and I was literally a zombie because of jet lag.  I probably could have slept standing up.  When we got to our car rental place, we found out the car wasn't insured, so if anything happened to it, we would be buying a new car.  So we fished out an extra £118, and we were on our way.

The problem was that this day we had been planning to go around London, but our day was pretty much shot.  We had to be in London the next day to pick up our luggage, so we decided to do the sights the next day, and hit up Highclere castle and Stonehenge that evening.  It's around now that we discover that Josh's GPS doesn't have any London maps on it, and without it, we are completely lost.   So Ben had to go into a sketchy petrol station to buy an old school map of London.

We decided we were hungry, and this is when we discovered the beauty of Tesco.  Seriously, sometimes I wish I could go back to the UK just for Tesco.  It's just that amazing.  We got sandwiches, white cheddar cheese (which Josh claimed was amazing, so of course I had to try it), deodorant, and contact solution.  Then we went to go check in to our hotel.  Josh just went in while Ben and I sat in the car waiting.  Josh locked the car, and as soon as he was inside the hotel, the car alarm starts going off.  There are horns and sirens, and the doors are locked with Ben and I inside, not being able to do a single thing.  We were trying in vain to unlock the doors, but there was nothing to be done.  A man was sitting in a car next to us just laughing his head off at us.  Ben and I would stop moving, and then the alarm would stop, but then one false move from either of us would set it off again.  Ben and I gave up trying to escape the car, and just slunk down as far as we could in our seats. Finally, Josh came to our rescue and turned off the alarm, and all we could do was just sit there and laugh about it. What makes this story even funnier is the fact that there was this button on the roof of the car that we kept pushing and wondering what the heck it was for.  When we got back to the States, Josh looked it up, and it ended up being the button that could disable interior compartment monitoring for the alarm system.

Go figure.

Our next stop was Highclere Castle, better known as Downton Abbey.

Notice our lovely poofy hair from being on a plane all night and having no hair product.

We got to tour the castle, and the grounds, and it was so much fun!  Honestly, one of the best parts of the trip.  Plus, the grass is the softest grass I have ever felt.  In my entire life.

After Highclere, we got some curry, but realized we didn't have any forks, so a 2nd trip to Tesco was necessary.  We went to a park to eat it, and mine was so so greasy.  It was getting all over my hands/arms. I was pouring some of the grease out onto the sidewalk, and not realizing that I was spilling it all over Ben's foot... oops.

So, covered in grease, we headed to Stonehenge next.  We got there too late to go to the Visitor's Center, but it was still awesome to see this in real life.

After Stonehenge, we realized we needed pajamas and clothes for the next day.  And so our 3rd trip to Tesco came about.  Josh and Ben found Tesco value shirts for only £4.  Josh bought a coral one, which we were very fond of.

It was finally time to go to bed, but the problem was that we might have only paid for 2 people to be in our hotel room.  And we might have had to pass right by reception to get to our room.  And the outside doors to the hotel locked at 11:00, and it was past that time.  And we only had one key.  Which Josh snapped as he was trying to get into the hotel.  So we had to cleverly sneak Ben into the hotel room.  I'm not sure exactly how he got into the hotel, because we couldn't get him the key, but he made it in without a hitch.  The problem was that we forgot to tell him our room number.  So Ben was creepily listening to the hotel doors listening for our voices.  

The problem was that Josh was in the shower, and I surely wasn't talking to myself, so Ben was in the hallway, completely lost.  It was just lucky that Josh called out asking if there was soap anywhere, otherwise Ben might have been out there for a while.

Whew, well, that was just the first two days.  Can you believe it?

More European adventures are to come!  Stay tuned!

1 comment:

  1. Such a fun post! Is it weird that I'm more jealous of the fact that you saw "Downton Abbey" than that you saw Stonehenge? Yeah, so cultured over here. Keep the posts coming!