Up in the sky in the Eye.

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Views from the Travelodge window – see the Shard? There will be many more photos of the Shard.

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We walked through Covent Garden passing a bridge, which looked as if it might twist or bounce down to the pavement if you stepped in it.

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A plaque for my cousin! I have googled ‘the sara sara’ and have had no luck finding out what it was for.

Phil bought some walking boots in one of the outdoor shops and we carried on down to the Embankment.

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Where there is the memorial to the Imperial Camel Corps of the First World War.

Back over the Hungerford Foot Bridge – and wonderful views down the Thames.

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Elvis is alive! And three feet taller! And on his mobile!!

We got on to the Eye after I lied to the security man about not having sharp things in my bag. Who would tell!!

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Going up! Lots of photos to follow – can’t be bothered to caption them.

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The Shard!

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The Shard! And my husband dicing with death!

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We met a couple from Australia who took our picture.

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Did I really go up there?

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Someone decided that it would be a good idea to walk back to Blackheath along the Thames Path. Could have been me…

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Won’t be eating here.

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Hopton’s almshouses – dwarfed by the skyscrapers.

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St Pauls – obscured by monstrous carbuncles.

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We went into Tate Modern to sneer at the artists – and found gold in this sunflower seeds exhibit.

The curator describes it as:

“Ai Weiwei’s Unilever Series commission, Sunflower Seeds, is a beautiful, poignant and thought-provoking sculpture. The thinking behind the work lies in far more than just the idea of walking on it. The precious nature of the material, the effort of production and the narrative and personal content create a powerful commentary on the human condition. Sunflower Seeds is a vast sculpture that visitors can contemplate at close range on Level 1 or look upon from the Turbine Hall bridge above. Each piece is a part of the whole, a commentary on the relationship between the individual and the masses. The work continues to pose challenging questions: What does it mean to be an individual in today’s society? Are we insignificant or powerless unless we act together? What do our increasing desires, materialism and number mean for society, the environment and the future?”

As you can see from above – it looks like a bit of tarmac.

We carried on.

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Past the Globe.

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Into the Anchor at Bankside – where I had a pint of Leffe and we shared a plate of pie, sausage and mash. Bliss.

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So hard to choose pictures – just going to post the lot. I love the Southbank.

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Oh, look – the Shard again.

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Look – Shard!

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In the middle of all this beauty – came Rotherhithe – with hoodies who I didn’t dare take photos of, and the picturesque Deptford car breakers,

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By now we were tired. It was a lot further than I had thought!

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We staggered through Greenwich, past the Queens House – and into sight of the Dome. Found the Trafalgar pub and collapsed!

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There was still another mile or two to walk back to the car – a jealousy inducing walk past lots of houses I would buy come the lottery win.

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Meridian line.

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Jersey Boys

Spent Saturday night at my best friends because I had drunk too much to drive home – but left early in the morning hoping to get an early start to drive up to London. Finally managed to prise Phil out of bed at 11 so we didn’t set out until after 12. Drove up to Blackheath and parked in a side street – then walked over to the heath. How about living in one of these houses!

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Got a train up to Charing Cross – and into a back street pub with lovely tiles. (And lovely beer..) January 2011 015

We thought we had left in plenty of time to get to the theatre. This is the theatre where one of my best friends used to work in, where I used to spend a lot of evenings in the pub opposite – so you would have thought I would be able to walk straight there – wrong! So we ended up running up Old Compton Street at the last minute and having to push past everyone in the row of seats.

Jersey Boys was great fun – well, the songs and dancing were – although the story line was a bit ‘rushed’.

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Walking over to the Travelodge we passed Foyles book shop – why it has an arm with a big hammer on the wall outside I have no idea.

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St Giles in the Fields – no longer in the fields!

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Glimpse through the window – contrast the beauty within, with the ‘artworks’ opposite.

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Got to the Travelodge – where you now have to use an automated booking in machine, despite there being two nice ladies hovering around the check in counter.Went up to the second floor and opened the door – to find a small cubicle with a single bed. I know that the booking at Travelodge always defaults to one person – so up until now have managed always to change to a double. As the rooms cost the same in any case I had no idea that they actually had single rooms. The lady at the counter changed us to a double (this time) and I resisted the temptation to tell her that I had booked a single but that I’d got lucky.

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We had vouchers for Livebait –I had crab cakes (not as good as in America) and mushroom risotto, Phil had roast cod and we shared spinach which cost FOUR POUNDS FIFTY PENCE!!! Good Lord, grows almost wild on the allotment. Still, it was really good.

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After we walked down to the river and over Hungerford foot bridge.

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Had a wander along the South Bank and in the book shop at the Queen Elizabeth Halls, and then back to the Travelodge,

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Past a huge flag,

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and a window display from hell.

Robins Hood Bay

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Jill and Karl left quite early, but Phil and I decided to stay Friday night and drive down on Saturday so I could go straight to work on Saturday night. (Sensible!?)

We drove down to Robins Hood Bay to do a circular walk from the Cleveland Way. We marvelled over this wonderful sculpture!

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Laughed at this humorous sign! (They were shut)

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And wandered through the quaint streets.

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Then it was off to the mud.

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and the erosion…

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And all the ups and downs.

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We went down to the beach and looked for jet – Phil prised out a huge rock which he thought looked right – and insisted on carrying it for the rest of the walk. I will look forward to my jet earrings and pendant!

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Bits of unlabelled archeology – wonder what these humps and bumps were?

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This pill box was starting to look a bit unsecure.

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Which way is it? Note the rock in the bag.

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The path along the cliff edge was extremely muddy – so it was a relief to get on the railway path back to Robins Hood Bay.

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Looking back the clouds looked really threatening but the rain held off

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Was absolutely worn out by the time we got back to the car – but it was a fantastic walk. We had fish ad chips for dinner, good day.

Whitby

When I suggested going to Whitby, I was thinking of a gentle stroll around the town – but it was a beautiful day – and Phil parked the car in Sandsend and we walked along the beach to Whitby.

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Erosion in action!

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When we got to the town we climbed up to the top to the Whale’s jaw bone

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With Captain Cook overlooking the harbour.

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Phil found a bike shop, and I found some charity shops, and then we went to the museum hoping to find out what jet looked like in it’s natural state – so that we could pick some up on the beach and Phil could carve me some beautiful jewellery. Unfortunately it would have cost £4 each to get in, so we made do with looking at the free art gallery, and my jewellery will have to wait.

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We walked back into town through the park, and into the run down High Street – look what they have done to the Post Office!

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The sun was just starting to go down as we crossed the swing bridge across the Eske – lighting the buildings in gold.

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We walked through the small streets and window shopped – £250 for sand dollars set in concrete!!

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We watched a fishing boat come in – and then found a great little pub with a friendly barman who told us all his future plans and about his past holidays.

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Then I found a yarn shop – so Phil had to go up the 99 steps on his own. Shame.

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This was the shop I took refuge in – and added some gansey wool to the stash of yarn waiting to be knitted.

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No comment!

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It was a bit dark – and we still had to walk back to Sandsend!

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We had wondered earlier why the parade of buildings had stopped abruptly and thought it might have been bomb damage – the curator at the museum told us it was because the architect had run out of money.

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