Arrived In London

We arrived in London to weather that is exactly like Oregon – in the 50’s and raining.The weather feels just like home. The cab ride yesterday from Heathrow to the hotel was a bit hair-raising, exceeding any cab ride to date. After several near misses with motorcycles and bicycles, dodging in and out of traffic and listening to a 21 gun salute (cannons that vibrated the cab) as we waited in traffic by Hyde Park, we finally made it to the Four Seasons at Canary Wharf. Along the way we passed Harrods, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, Parliament, Tower Bridge… and a lot of other sites that flew by.

The Four Seasons is located next to the Thames on the historic site of the West India Quay – the center for Britain’s spice trade hundreds of years ago. After checking into the hotel in early afternoon, we took a break and rested from the overnight flight, and then headed out to walk around the Canary Wharf area. Canary Wharf is a financial district filled with banks and office buildings. While busy during the day when we arrived, it’s  quiet – almost deserted – in the evening. We discovered the underground station for the Jubilee line, which is a 10-minute walk from the hotel, and several promising restaurants.

We returned from dinner thoroughly soaked but had a great time walking through the Wharf. We ate at the Canteen, a contemporary casual restaurant  that serves traditional British food including deviled kidneys, spiced pigs cheeks, mushy peas and scotch egg. We had the fish and chips – it seemed a good way to start our first day in London. On the way back to the hotel we cut through Canada Place office building and ran into a car expo in the lobby. It was filled with high end (Rolls Royce and Bentley), exotic sports (Lamborghini,Maserati, Ferrari) and classic cars. Matt was in heaven and we know Chris would have loved it too. They had a podium where you could sign up for test drives, but we passed. It was tempting though…