Saturday, July 12, 2008

Trip of a Lifetime! (Part 1)

This was really a trip of a lifetime for my family. There are no words I could say here to express just how special it was to have them over here, watching them see things they never thought they would be able to see and soaking up the cultures they were able to experience.

Since I have lived in Europe, my family has heard all about the ups and downs, the good and the bad, the completely unbelievable to the most awesome of living in Europe. Nevertheless, until you experience it for yourself, you never really understand what it is like (good and bad). They now have an incredible idea and better understanding of life in Europe.

From the moment we started planning this trip, I wanted them to be able do and see everything they wanted to see and experience, as I knew this would more than likely be the only trip to this side of the world. They are not international travelers, although they love traveling around the US (especially to Disneyworld!). They really did not have too many suggestions and left the major planning to me, they just said they wanted to experience it all. (Ok, that helps a lot!)

For many, the first trip over the big pond sends you to the most popular destinations...London and Paris. The cities you have heard about most and dreamed of seeing. When I asked my family where they wanted to go...their answer was exactly that, London and Paris.

They arrived in Brussels on Thursday, June 19th! Boy, was I (and Maxie) excited to see them. They came in a couple of days early to rest up and get over the dreaded jet-lag, plus I wanted them to spend some time in Brussels and in my apartment they have heard so much about.

We left for London on Saturday traveling on the EuroStar. Although I have been to London many times, this was everyone else's first trip to London and first trip on a high-speed train! I have expressed my love of train travel before and now my family agrees! They loved it! It is just so easy!

I digress...

While in London, we saw everything there was to see. We took the "Original London Bus Tour" (which, in my opinion, is the only way to see everything in London when you have limited time). We did all things 'touristy'....Buckingham Palace (including the Changing of the Guards and the major crowds that went with it), Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey, the London Eye, Tower of London, Tower Bridge, London Bridge (yes, it is still standing and has not fallen), boat ride down the Thames River, etc. I could go on and on.

They experienced riding on the other side of the road (which is really weird the first time you do it), the "look to the left" and "look to the right" signs painted on the ground so you do not step out in front of a car coming from a direction you are not used to, the really cute taxis, riding the "Tube" (which is rode a LOT!), and Daddy got to visit and tour the Grand Lodge of England (he is a Mason so this was REALLY special for him). The weather was perfect (and hot) which you do not typically see in London....we even got a little sunburn! Not many people can say they got a sunburn in a climate where it rains a lot!

As a believer that pictures tell the are a few of my favorites!

Getting ready to board the EuroStar...Angie and I on board...
Starting the bus tour...
The Glover's and good ole Big Ben!
And, at Buckingham Palace....
Riding the London Eye...
Taking in the views....
Wow...check out Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament in the background!
Yep, we are really high up!
Mom and Angie are afraid of heights...but they did great!
We just hope this bolt stays put! Check out how big that thing is!
The Glover's!
Daddy (an avid hunter) checking out all the gun at the Tower of London!
Up next....the Glover's in Paris!

No comments:

Post a Comment