The Eurostar train ride, although without the really nice seats and the food/drink attendant, was without any drama. Yes, we had to cart the huge bags between trains but I was kind of getting used to it by then. That didn’t mean I liked or enjoyed it, just that I was starting to get used to it! Oh, and the loud child sitting in front of us.
We were the last ones off of the train when we got to St. Pancras in London. I planned it that way! It was much easier to get the bags off the train if I could swing them down and be confident that I wouldn’t hit anyone on the way! A nice taxi driver took us to the Comfort Inn. I think there was probably a good reason why he had never taken someone there before. I just wanted a place near Victoria Station, so that I could show it to Ed, and it was a Comfort Inn and it was just for one night. WTH, right???
It was an older building but what did you expect in that part of town? Everything is old there, I think! It’s only for one night; it’s okay. We took ALL of our bags to the elevator and were instructed to go DOWN one flight. Our room was 108. Usually the ground floor across the pond is G and the 100 level rooms don’t start until you go up to the first floor, 1 in the lift … ummm, elevator. I expected to go UP one flight. WTH, we went down and ended up in the kitchen area where they serve breakfast. The building smelled old too.
When we got to the room, the lights didn’t work. WTH? Wait, what’s this little red light on the wall? It looked like it was on a card slot so, just as a test, I inserted our room key into the slot. The lights came on. Oooookay. So where’s the air conditioning? We are from Texas; you MUST have air conditioning! We couldn’t find the controls anywhere. There was an iron heater under the window but no A/C. Really??? I had to call down to the front desk to ask the woman to come show me how to turn the A/C on.
She eventually showed up but not before I had wilted from the heat and had already found a remote control that didn’t go to the TV. Hmmm. Yep, it went to the A/C unit, at the top of the wall, just to the left of the window. It makes sense, since heat rises, to have it there but it was difficult to feel way down at the floor level.
I opened the window until we could figure this out. Then it dawned on me. We were under the Ground Floor. The window only opened so far and it was frosted. What’s outside this window? Humph! Not the most upbeat view, as you can see!
I could tell you that it was also very tiny, but I’d rather give you some examples. The closet consisted of a rod only as long as the width of the built-in cabinet, since the rod stuck out from the back of the built-in cabinet, instead of sideways. When you were sitting at the desk, below the small tv on the wall, you had the back of the chair against the end of the bed, which really wasn’t bad except when someone wanted on the other side of the bed. They either had to crawl over the bed or over you to get there. That’s not good when you are not as young as you used to be!
The bathroom was as long as the bedroom. Sounds great, doesn’t it? A nice huge bathroom? Not really. It was only wide enough for a shower, the largest item in the room. It was almost like walking down a hall just to get to the commode! There was a sink but a counter? Yeah, not so lucky there either. And I forgot that the English don’t supply wash cloths. There was a single bath towel, hand towel, and bath mat inside the door. There was an extra bath towel and hand towel under the coffee pot in the bedroom though. There was liquid soap hanging in a wall container next to the sink but none in the shower. There was, however, liquid shampoo hanging in the shower.
Enough about the room. It’s only for one night, right? We were still wilting a little from the heat but not quite so badly. Maybe it just took a while for the room to cool down? We decided to go get something to eat before we had heat stroke. I found out that when you remove the room key from the card slot inside the room, you only have a few seconds to open the door before all the lights go out.
We lucked out. On the corner just down from the hotel was St. George’s Tavern and they served food! Woohoo!!!
The dining room was DOWN one floor, in the basement, but at least they had air conditioning! They seated us but it seemed like we sat there forever before someone came to take our drink order. They seated another American couple at the table for two next to us so we had a great conversation during dinner. The food was actually pretty great, the drinks were good, and the servers were cute. And it was only a short walk back to the hotel. The day was not turning out too badly at all.
And the room was downright COLD when we got back. Appreciation for air conditioning, frosted windows, and a great shower. Oh, and thankfully, removing the card key inside the room only turned off the lights and NOT the air conditioning. Now how do you calculate Fahrenheit from Celsius, because 26 degrees Celsius is way too hot and 18 degrees Celsius is way too cold! Where’s my iPhone? There’s an app for that and I already have it! I try to be prepared.