You are probably going to be asking where the photos of Gena were at the end of this post. Sadly, my jetlagged self did not do a good documentation job and get any photos of either Mimi and Gena or Charlie and Gena. Doh! Also got absolutely no photos of Mimi with me. Fortunately, I have picked up my photography game lately, so it's about to get all picture crazy up in here. Doesn't really help with this post, though.
My sister Meredith and one of her besties Gena came to visit right after we got to London. Like, as in, the day after. So we were a little out of sorts, but fortunately they are extremely easy house guests. For example, they show up with presents and wine and are also quite self entertaining.
Gena is living in Paris for a month and Meredith came over to visit her. They spent a week in Paris and then came to London for a few days. Witty recaps of their adventures can be found here and here.
They really showed London who was boss with their sightseeing skills. I'm pretty sure I would not have been able to keep up with their schedule. Or maybe it was because I was watching it through jet lagged eyes? Not sure. They also pubbed it up and hung out with some, ahem, interesting locals.
Charlie absolutely loved spending time with both of them. In fact, the three of them were roommates. I think this was an OK situation except for their first night, which was only our second night in London. He was up during the wee hours, but I found Gena sitting by his crib, quietly reading books to him. It just melted my cold, jaded heart.
It was a nice visit; they are such fun girls. Charlie loved showing off for them and they brought him the most adorable policeman's hat (like a real Bobby wears!). After Gena left, Charlie continued to call her from the objects around the flat that he's adopted as his phones. Now he calls both of them. :)
Gena headed back to Paris on Monday and Meredith stayed on until Wednesday. So we had a nice couple of low key days hanging out with Charlie, ordering takeout and drinking wine.
On Tuesday we took Charlie to Hyde Park with the intention of visiting the Princess Diana Memorial Playground. We learned very quickly that Hyde Park is quite large and could stand to have some improved signage. It took us a while to figure out where we were going, but in the meantime, we walked so much and burned so many calories, there was nothing left and we were invisible. Or at least, that's what we told ourselves.
We had lunch at a very cute cafe right on the pond in Hyde Park. Of course I have no pictures of that. Don't worry Gena, the cute cafe did not make the cut ahead of you.
Then we walked and walked and walked and walked and walked and walked and walked and cursed a little, and walked and walked and walked. Charlie was almost asleep in his stroller when we finally found the park. It is a REALLY neat park. It has a Peter Pan theme. Here are some fun action shots:
It was fun and we ended the day with lotso wine and Indian takeout. And a run to the store for more wine and CHOCOLATE. I mentioned how good the chocolate is here, right?
On Wednesday, Mimi's flight didn't leave until 6, so we decided to get out and enjoy the morning. We had ever intention of going to the Natural History Museum, but when we came up from the tube the sun was shining and it had turned into a beautiful day.
By the way, Mimi was quite impressed with Charlie's mad tube-riding skills:
She thinks he could hang with the city kids in NYC. He seemed excited to hear it, as he has been working diligently at Minding the Gap.
Anyways, back to Wednesday. We started walking again. And the stupid map made it look like everything was so much closer than it truly was. So we would walk 30 minutes and have made no progress. Trafalgar Square was just not going to happen, but once again, there was so much walking we ended up invisible.
We ended up on Oxford street (lots of shopping) with a very grouchy Charlie, found a pub and ordered some drinks and food. Charlie started playing with the salt and pepper shakers and got pepper in his eyes and screamed for 20 minutes. Yeah. That was fun. Exactly what the other pub patrons were looking for mid-day.
After eating and cheering up, we hit up Harrods. What an off the hook department store. I can't even explain it. It's like a museum dedicated to shopping. They have so much, it makes the Macy's at Harold Square in NYC look podunk. I must go back and re-examine.
After that we left Mimi to gawk at the super sized H&M on Oxford Street and I got Charlie home. That huge H&M must have been an intoxicating experience (or was that the drinks at lunch?) because Meredith got back just in time to leave for her train! We were sad to see her go, but know she was excited to get home and see Lucas.
So until next time (wherever that may be)... Bye Mimi! Bye Gena!