As expected, I was in bed early last night, before 9:00pm. But I desperately needed the sleep and I think the rest has helped me to shake off the last of the jet lag. I still woke up early, but that's just me.
The initial plan for today was to meet a friend for coffee in Camden and then maybe wander around the markets. The forecast wasn't too bright so I thought this was a wise move. However, as the sun came up it was looking better than I expected so I changed plans. I was also feeling a little anxious that I hadn't done any of my day trips yet and didn't want to leave them all until my return. So I decided to make my apologies to my friend and head to Windsor Castle. At first I was thinking a grey day might be bad for photographing castles but then I figured it might be more dramatic.
I took the tube to Paddington. The trusses in the station ceiling have this ornate pattern.
From Paddington I caught the train to Windsor. On the way we went through Southall which curiously had the station name in an Indian looking script as well as English. I assume it was to embrace the cultural identity of the area. Nice one.
I had to change trains at Slough. Speaking of Slough, all my guesses at pronunciation were wrong. It's pronounced sl-ow as in "cow" - go figure.
While waiting at Slough for the Windsor train I noticed this building. Seemed a little out of place actually.
Also while at Slough an express train belted past. It was incredibly fast!
Once at Windsor I made my way to the castle. It must be odd for the town to be in the shadow of this massive structure. I wandered around taking some shots. It's an impressive place.
And what's a castle without a gargoyle or dragon or two?
It started to spot with rain so it was time to move inside and do the tour of the state apartments. As you'd expect they are very grand, if a bit dark and gloomy. But only the Queen's reception room had some serious Royal bling to it. As you'd expect, you're not allowed to take photos inside, so nothing to show you.
I saw this odd style of clock on the side of the chapel. I've seen some others like it in London.
And the chapel was equally as impressive.
One really obvious thing you notice as soon as you get to the castle is the air traffic. The castle must be close to right on a main flight path. Lucky those castle walls are thick. I checked my flight path app and this was the traffic going on.
When I left the castle it was raining to I dashed to find somewhere for lunch before heading back into the city. At the end of the day I had a booking to visit Dennis Severs' house.
It's hard to describe what you encounter when you enter this unassuming door. If you're interested I suggest you read for yourself on the website. http://www.dennissevershouse.co.uk/ It was a great experience, though I didn't figure out all of the story. It would be worth going back a second time - I'm sure I'd discover more.
Near the house I came across this sculpture. I had to look a couple of times to decide whether it was a sculpture or some maintenance work.
The tube back to the hotel was packed, I guess it was still rush hour. But I made it back intact. I ended the evening sitting in the hotel bar writing this blog and sipping on a martini (or two).