December 28…

Finally made the decision and changed my reservations. Returning to Sacramento on December 28.  Sad, sad, sad day.  

And now I am exhausted.  It took a lot of mental and psychic energy to set that date.  

And planning is not over.  I have to be out of the Schengen zone for 9 days more.  So I am trying to choose a tour of Ireland.  Do you know how many tour choices there are?

 Far too many!

I walk the middle

Sounds zen like? It’s the truth but not a spiritual path. It’s how I survive on london streets and in Tube stations.

 So they drive on the left here, right? Oh. Correct! So wouldn’t you think then that the foot traffic would also follow that convention? On the escalators the signs read Stand on the right. Implying ok to pass on the left. So walking down the street which to choose? left like the car drivers or right like the escalator people? 

I pick the middle.
In the tube station- stand right signs and walk left signs within 50 feet of each other!  
 
Oops 

 (Technological problems.  Word press doesn’t see the other photo of the stand right sign.  How odd.  So here’s another sign that amused me- not a flu shot but a flu jab!)

Sidewalks are regional  too. France is often Tarmac. With bumps. But mostly flat. Berlin is cobblestone of great variety. London is occasionally brick. But incredibly uneven. Either you step forward and trip on your sole because it is higher than you expect. Or you almost fall because you step down much further than you expect.  

Dinner

Yorkshire pudding! My niece has a with a friend tonight so I am on my own. And what I want is roast beef and Yorkshire pudding! It’s been14 years Ithat haven’t eaten red meat. Thus tonight I am dining alone at Simpsons in the Strand. Next to the Savoy Hotel. 

 Hoity toity And maybe a bit touristy but it had great trip advisor reviews. 
And the sommelier poured me an excellent light red. Yup. France introduced me to light Reds.  

I have great hopes.  

And yikes I must start thinking in French again. I will be in paris in less than 48 hours. I hope my language skills will come back. 

Thirty minutes of waiting and I just got served.   
 The verdict:  
Its official. I prefer French cuisine. Hands down.  

I prefer French beef. (Sorry Ed).

And I prefer my sister’s Yorkshire pudding.  

But the service was impeccable. Just tried to pour some water and someone rushed over holding his hand up to tell me to stop!

I miss France. 

Ninja Sightings

Readers were so taken with the ninjas and disappointed it was the iPhone auto correct that saw them… You all must have shifted the energy and manifested Ninja Warriors. 
Driving through Brighton I spotted one- nearly invisible He revealed himself as we drove by!

  
  
And then Silvi got in on the Ninja craze. I think the Brighton Ninja sent her a package. Next thing I know, she’s dressed like this!

 

Lost Property

Railway stations workers in England remind me of highway workers in the U.S. Always in groups. Watching one person work. And not very optimistic. 
Easy enough to get to the Dover train station. Lovely ticket man who printed all our tickets so I didn’t have to figure out how to claim my reservations at the ticket machine. Busy train and a few minutes late so we had a one minute connection. Grabbed our bags and jumped off. Missed it! Found a Starbucks. Settled in to wait. I was a bit chilled so I reached for my bag with my coat in it
And stopped dead. 
Realizing the coat. And LBs jacket. Were on the train going on to london. I ran to the staton men (yes men). Told the first guy. Oh well. Hmmm. Ummm we have to talk to Fred. He has the radio. And explain to Fred. Who talked to someonebon the radio with no results. So we have to talk now to the statio. Manager. And repeat the story each time and have everyone listening shake their heads oh not sure you’ll see them again… The station manager calls the last stop but that train just pulled out. They shake their heads again and go back to their other work. One guy hands me the brochure with the number of heir Lost Porperty department so I can make a claim. 

We continue on to our destination Brighton. I call, make my claim with an enthusiastic clerk who asks and question and replies to all my answers with an upbeat Okey Dokey! Says give it 5 days for anything to get routes to the Lost Property. 
Now what? I just have a sweater. LB just has a sweat shirt. It’s chilly. We set out. She finds a wind breaker. All I can find at Marks & Spencer is a full on lightweight rain coat. But it works. 
And we go on through Brighton and through Bath enjoying our stay. (It onlY rained once).  
I had faith. Using all my resources of Reiki and other energetic options I wrapped the coats with tons of energy that would transmit to the person picking them up- “turn this in. You don’t want these coats. They are not the coats you are looking for. Move them on to Lost Property.”
Laugh if you want. If you are a skeptic. On Tuesday afternoon I received the email from Lost Property: we have your coats!!! Even the camera that LB had
Zipped in the inside pocket.  

Good day

Crossing the Channel

The crossing of La Manche (French name) was uneventful in that no disgruntled workers blockaded the harbor. And it was a smooth beautiful ride. I forgot how close the two countries are- you can see those White Cliffs quickly.  
I am hoping the return journey will be as uneventful. We go back on Eurostar. And they have been having major problems with the migrants trying to get into the Chunnel to walk to England. A week or two ago people were trapped in the train cars as migrants were walking on top of the cars. Yesterday I received an email from the president of Eurostar. (Not a personal one!) he was reassuring the customers that actions were being taken to keep Eurostar safe and running on time. We leave next Sunday at 11:30.   

English!

As in the language not the people.  They speak it here.  Fluently.  It’s bizarre to hear English everywhere after living in France for six months.  Well really it’s not a surprise.  Duh.  But it is surprising how weird it seems to me. 

I miss France.  

Comment on the last blog.  I really should check my iPhone posts. About the driving misturn I said. Or meant to. That I had rehearsed it. iPhone decided that ninjas had rehearsed it. Truly there were no ninjas in the car

Visa, England & Driving in Paris 

Leaving for the UK tomorrow. Well to be accurate: England. This is the end of my 6 month Visa time in France. Sooo sad. Unbelievable that I have been here 6 months- the time has flown by. So off to a non-schengen country and back on the 20th. Then I become a simple American tourist who can be in the Schengen area for 90 days in a six month period. 
This also marks the halfway point for my first August visitor. She’s been on her own a lot. Her choice. My fatigue (had done too much the week before she arrived. Speaking French is exhausting.) The heat. But she’s a hardy tourist so she managed all the high spots. As in high lights and literally high. Top of the Arc de Triomphe, Montparnasse tower, the dome of Sacre Coeur. I think she missed the tower of Notre Dame.  
We also drove to visit Guedelon- a site where they have been building a medieval castle using only true tools and methods. The building started in 1998 and won’t be finished for another 10 years. For Medieval scholars it was fascinating. Picked up another chateau on the way – Saint Fargeau.  
Did you catch the most significant word in that paragraph? Drove! Yup. I swore I would never again drive in Paris but getting to a hertz in the suburbs was going to take too long. I found a place just south of me that was right next to the Boulevard Peripherique- the loop around Paris. We left at 10. Except for a misturn in the first block- which ninjas rehearsed! – it was fine. And once out of the Paris area we sailed. 
Well. No. My friend was a bit surprised at my very conservative driving. My sister would have been delighted. I have no intention of getting a ticket in France!
Speaking of intention, I am setting out my intention for a smooth trip tomorrow. Train from Paris to Calais. Ferry to Dover. Train to Brighton.  
Calais has been the site of migrant and disgruntled ferry worker disruptions. Once out of the Calais harbor I will be happy. And setting a positive intention for the Eurostar ride back on the 20th… Migrants want in that Eurostar tunnel!  
I’ll keep you posted. And next blog will cover my friend’s thoughts about me in Paris.