Travel London - Game of Life - Postcard 3


This morning I awoke to my heart singing so loud, I had no choice but to get up and dance with it.   I put the coffee pot on, opened the blinds to see the sun just beginning to grace the sky and began to dance around my room. Like a child in love for the first time.  This feeling was inspired, by knowing this was only the beginning in finding a new love for life.

My favorite part of my room in The Trafalgar Hilton Hotel

When my coffee was ready I drank it sitting in a chair next to the window sill that overlooked the city. As people rushed by to get to work, I remembered today was the day I was to meet Laurie.  Laurie is the owner of LF, a store that carries my line, Shrake.  It just so happens, he is here for a few days to shop for new merchandise for his stores back in the states.

Visit www.LFStores.com for more information

I got ready and asked the concierge how to get to the 10 Bells, a famous bar that I was supposed to meet Laurie in front of.  They told me which bus to take, I bought my ticket and just like that was on my first bus in London. 

           

It moved quickly through the streets with many people getting on and off at every stop. I then realized I had no idea of how to tell where it was stopping and when my stop would come. I made my way to the front of the bus to ask the driver. He was very kind and said he would holler back to me, when we got there. 

Upon return of my seat, I noticed a woman aside me smiling. I asked how she was doing and she replied very well. She said she too was trying to figure out how to tell where to get off. We laughed about how different things were here and I asked where she was from. Oddly enough she lived in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The place I was born.  I reminisced of the time I lived there and was pleased to hear that Old Town, my favorite part of New Mexico had not changed.  Just then the bus came to a screeching halt and the driver shouted, 'Madame, it is here you wish you go!'

            

I got off the bus and began my search of 10 Bells. Everyone kept telling me it was in a different place. I moved swiftly through the streets, enticed to stop at all the vendors cart's set up along the way, but did not allow myself. As I did not want to be late to meet Laurie and was unsure of the time or location. 

Flea Markets in East End

A gypsy walked up to me as I was turning the corner to go down an ally that cut through to the street I believed I was looking for. She gave me two silk flowers wrapped in tin foil and told me I was very lucky and blessed. I said thank you. I tried to keep walking while telling her thank you but no thanks on the flowers. She said, "You never turn down a gift from a gypsy." I smiled and said,' Okay!' I took the foil wrapped flowers and handed her 2 euros. She nodded and said, 'Be blessed child, be blessed'

A Gypsy said they were lucky!

After getting on the street I was searching for I noticed the white church that was said to be next to, 10 Bells. Just then I saw the bar and below the sign was Laurie. I greeted him hello, twenty minutes late from my lack of directions.  He told me this very spot was where Jack the Ripper, used to come after he would finish with one of his victims.

Jack the Ripper used to hang out here at the 10 Bells, when he would finish with a victim

We walked through many flea markets, where they sold everything from fresh fruits to fudge and a stand where fresh baked goods were shipped in from Paris that morning. When we got past the food, we came to the clothing and accessories vendors. Booth after booth was filled with every possible piece of clothing one would love to wear or one might never wear. It was interesting to say the least. After spending a few hours in the flea markets of East End, we made our way to the famous Brick Lane where we continued to shop finding our way into every boutique that lined the street.

The famous Brick Lane Street

At lunchtime, Laurie took me to his favorite bagel shop. It was a hole in the wall place on Brick lane, where you stand and eat. I loved it!  He asked if I was up for trying something I had not eaten. I said, 'Definitely!' He ordered for the both us. My lunch was a salt beef sandwich on rye bread, with a coke. The sandwich was delicious and by the time I finished eating it, the little bagel shop had completely filled up and the line went outside. 

           

We left Brick Lane and made our way to Covent Square. Where we did much more shopping but were now slowed by the inconsistent showers of rain.  Laurie and I went on a scavenger hunt in search of an umbrella so we could continue to shop with out getting wet. By the time we found the umbrellas and walked out of the store. The rain stopped and in fact it did not rain again the entire time.  We met some other clients at a coffee shop on Kingsland Road where they were having an art exhibition LWLies Magazine was showcasing 'Romance & Cigarettes.' The paintings were not on a canvas but actually on the walls of the coffee shop.

"Romance & Cigarettes" Art exhibit

We finished shopping around 6:30 in the evening and bid our farewells. When I got to my hotel room, I found myself exhausted and decided to take a nap. I awoke late in the evening and wanted to go out to explore the local pubs.  Although the concierge in the lobby said that Sunday night every thing was closed. I decided I would still go for a stroll. So without a particular place to go I began walking through the streets of London, watching couples come out of restaurants that were closing. Bartenders at pubs were straightening the pool tables. It was then I saw a club at the end of the street across the way. I made my way to the door and asked the bouncer how long it would stay open. He said till 1am which meant I had about an hour to check it out.

           

I posted up at the bar and ordered a jack and coke. A gentleman next to me, ordered four drinks.  He carefully picked them up and walked to a table where his friends sat. Within in a matter of minutes he was back at the bar. This happened a few times, so I jokingly said,' You know you're aloud to take your time with each drink?' He laughed and said the drinks were not all for him and that he hardly drank.  He introduced himself, his name was Gazio.  He told me he was there with a bunch of his buddies and his girlfriend and that she was getting jealous that he kept coming up to the bar to talk to me. I laughed and said; 'Well than you better run' he said I want to buy you a drink first. And so he did. 

           

Ten minutes later he walked back to the bar with his cousin and then disappeared back to his table with his friends and girlfriend. His cousin stayed and we talked for awhile; it was his 22nd birthday. He told me, 'Me and Gazio are both chefs at the famous City Kabob on Park Lane." Where I could get the best Turkish Kabobs in London. "Eh, No! The best Turkish kabobs any where!' he said. I told him when I returned to London in May, I would come visit them and let him know if his claim of the 'BEST' was true!

When I went back to my hotel, I found my luggage waiting for me.  It was perfect, the locks were still locked and most importantly it was here. Maybe the gypsies rose's were lucky after all! 

My infamous luggage has returned!

To read my review of the Trafalgar Hilton go to The Trafalgar Hilton Hotel London - Review

To read more of my experiances while in Londong go to Travel London - Game of Life - Postcard 2 and Travel London - Game of Life Postcard 4

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