I was much more relaxed about getting on a plane then I had expected to be. I even had a cooked breakfast in the hotel, a breakfast that I fully expected to see again before I left for the airport but no, it stayed where it was meant to!
The check-in process was simple, I do admit a sense of panic as my bag disappeared down a hole into Heathrow’s warren of baggage tunnels. At the departure lounge there was a call to find out if anyone wanted to pay in order to upgrade from Economy to Premium Economy; as it wasn’t that much, I did.
The upgrade meant I had a leather chair, a gift bag, a bit more legroom and my food was served on proper plates with metal cutlery. Nice.
Take off was good, I’d compare the rush to Rita at Alton Towers (just a bit faster), I had no airsickness at all, for which I’m very thankful. As we came into land, I did get a little anxious as to what was ahead, but I had no need to worry, we came down much quicker than I had expected and before I knew it we were down.
It then took 3 hours to get to my hotel. Most of that was waiting for the bags to appear. Those that know me will know when I’ve been to London I somehow seem to cross paths with film & TV personalities; and I’m happy to say I was on US soil for 30 minutes when I saw my first star.
I was in the immigration line when Naomi Watts, the English via Australia actress, walked across the front of the queue. I saw her from a long way off but didn’t take a photo as she had her children with her. The Princess Diana film that she is in will be interesting as she is 5’4 and Diana was 5’10.
Passport stamped, bag eventually collected, I headed for the hotel. I took three trains, the final being on the subway. The trains are great; clean, tidy and air conditioned. The platforms are not air conditioned and the heat is extreme. It’s like standing in front of an oven and having the heat fanned around you. I thought the tube was hot but it in no way compares. It must be horrific in the full heat of summer.
I’ll post some pictures of my room (yes I’m one of those who photograph the rooms they stay in) in another post.
I dumped my bags and had a little walk around the neighbourhood. I’d done a bit of research before coming, so I knew there were a couple of places to eat. One being the Fairway Cafe, which sits above a market opposite the hotel. The market itself was well stocked and the fruit quantity & selection would put Morrisons to shame!
As it was a cafe above a market I wasn’t expecting much, but the food was outstanding. I had a burger, but before it came, I was given dipping bread, some extra salad & coleslaw and a glass of water. I also had a lemon drink that was served in a jam jar. When the burger came, it looked small, but when I looked at it properly, I could see that it wasn’t really that small and was about an inch thick! Without a doubt it’s the best burger I’ve ever eaten.
September is the end of summer for New York but its very muggy here. Not Brecon muggy though, as the air is very dry. People are walking around in jeans, jumpers, jackets. I’ve no chance of doing that, for me it will be; shorts, short sleeved shirts or tees.