London, England-April 2018

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After my 24 hour journey from Brisbane, I finally arrived in London at 6:50 am. But with collecting bags and traffic,  I did not arrive to my hotel until closer to 9:30.  Those last few hours of the journey were the longest! My friends, Madison and Andrew, happen to be visiting from Sydney, so we had made plans to catch for lunch at Chiltern Firehouse.
It was really good.

 

Part of the reason I stopped in London was to go to my favorite boot store, Duo.  The only physical store is in Bath, so I went on a little train adventure.

My dumb self was so certain I was going to get boots I only traveled with one pair of shoes. I should have known that because of that reason alone I would not have luck at the boot shop. My feet were FREEZING.  Bath was qaint little town. I am sure I would have enjoyed it a bit more if it had not been raining and cold.

It’s not a proper trip to Bath with out visiting the Roman Baths.

That evening I went to see the play Hamilton with my friend Michael. I am a serious fan girl of this play. I originally had trouble getting tickets and then one day they were just available. Having it seen it 2 times before I was excited. Um…. it was different. They changed somethings. It was not bad just not as enjoyable as my other times.

The next day I just found trouble. I went shopping and ended up in the wrong part of town. I somehow ended up on Grafton St.  No major damage was done but it was close. I did fall for a slick sales guy pulling into some beauty store where I ended up spending money on stuff I’ll never use. You know the place, here have a free soap. DON’T take the soap!!

Overall I had a lovely visit and it was great to catch up with friends. I’ll be heading back again later this year to try to find some boot again. I managed to book a ticket for $8 using my Qantas points. So why not??? P.S. if you have miles and want to get to London, try booking London City ( LCY) vs. Heathrow (LHR).  The tax savings would cover any taxi fare from London City!

Until next time, safe travels!

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@DuoBoots, where have you been all my life? Edinburgh, Scotland October 2014

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When I arrived at customs in Edinburgh, I was asked the purpose of my trip. I said to buy some boots. The agents laughed and said boots? I said yes, Duo Boots. She stamped my passport and wished me luck.

Since it appeared that my hotel room was not going to magically become available, I decided to hit the streets and take care of this boot business. I was staying at the Hilton Edinburgh Grosvenor so it was nice stroll down Princes Street to visit my friends at the Duo Boots.

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I spent the better part of an hour trying on all sorts of boots and shoes. The ladies were quite nice in indulging me. I am happy to report, that yes, I found boots and shoes to take home with me.

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Boots,check now off to find some scotch and shortbread.

Since I was on Princes Street, I decided to visit the castle. Now for those you planning a trip to Edinburgh, the easiest way to get to the castle is take a taxi to the top. Option 2, is to walk across the North Bridge. Or take Option 3 and take the stairs in the middle of hill and then walk up a insane curvy road ( worse option, trust me)

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Edinburgh Castle

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I noticed the Scotch Whiskey Experience on my way to the Castle, so after touring around, I decided a little scotch would help me warm up. Plus I was not about to climb those stairs/hill again.

I learned there are 4 regions in which Scotch Whiskey hails from and that each region has its own distinct aroma. Highlands, Lowlands, Islay and Speyside.  Apparently I like Whiskey from the Highlands.

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Now properly warmed up, it was time to head back to the hotel. Again I was not about going down those stairs, so I jumped on the Hop On Hop Off Bus. And fell asleep. Like you did not see that one coming.  I woke up in time to remember that I needed to head back to Duo to pick up my boots.  I was really sleepy at this point, so I decided to pop into to Starbucks, for the wifi, and as luck would have it, some shortbread!

IMG_2133Scotch, Shortbread and Boots. DONE! Mission accomplished……..

Hello Edinburgh……

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I have to laugh at myself sometimes. I gave myself a challenge of visiting 50 countries before 40. In order to do this I would need to actually go to places I’ve never been. Ironically, the next few trips are not new countries, but new places. Oh well, it’s going to make 2015 interesting.

When I was in Tanzania, I met a nice couple that live in Scotland. We have since kept in touch and I mentioned that I wanted to go to London to go boot shopping. Yes boots. Well lucky for me,maybe not so much for my friends, there is a  Duo Fit Ship in Edinburgh. So I can get my boots, visits a new place and see some friends. Win win.

Why am I flying to the UK for boots? I am tall, have wide calves and big feet. Finding boots to fit are a problem. Duo Boots have 21 different calf sizes, 3 widths and various heights.  I think my biggest challenge is going to be suitcase space!

So I made the decision, but I had to find flights. I considered the direct flight from Chicago to Edinburgh on United for about a hot minute. They fly a 757 on that route. Anyone that knows planes, know that 7 hour 35 minutes on a 757 is pushing the level of comfort. So to spare my bum, I opted to go out of my way to Frankfurt and Brussels.  Yes I realize that I would have been better off time wise, but nope. I flew Newark-Dublin once on a 757, that was the first and last time.EDI

 

So other then buying boots, eating shortbread and drinking scotch, I guess I need to research what there is to do in Edinburgh. I am looking forward to discovering a new city and catching up with my friends!