Friday, January 11, 2008

London Underground

"Mind the gap".....

OK. I am back to the Jungle but I will write maybe couple more posts on UK and London.

Today I am gonna share with you on London Underground or a.k.a. subway.

Surely enough I rode the famous British subway. The key word: different and unique.

So far I have seen many subways in many capitals around the World. Some are alike, other are unique. London's is special.

So, few observations:

- The underground system is pretty old and very well developed. It looks like the authorities knew that the future is "riding the subway". It's fast and gets you to any place in the city. It's easy to find your way around

-The train is pretty old but the carts are very well maintain, surprisingly clean, comfortable with soft chairs. Also, smaller the other underground carts.

-The fee is per area you are going. You need your card to enter AND...exit the subway. If you spent more time or got off on the stop out of the area you paid for, a fine of 20 pounds waits for you.

-Cameras are everywhere. The Big-Bro is there. Maybe it gives some people security comfort but it's kind of scary and funny:" Don't pick your nose, you are on camera..." :)

-Trains have a great and efficient schedule. Probably it's one of the most well organized subway systems in the World, I have seen.

By the way, the underground rides on the right side of the road, excuse me---of the tunnel...or maybe left....or maybe there is only one way.

The English Way, my Dear :)

ps. "Mind the gap" is a warning to train passengers to remind them of the sometimes significant gap between the train door and the station platform. It was first introduced in 1969 by the London Underground rapid transit system.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Meeting the Queen

" In every woman there is a Queen. Speak to the Queen and the Queen will answer..." Norwegian Proverb

Before I left Great Britain I got to see the Queen. It was great. Just great.


ps. Let me know if interested to know more details.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Good bye Chamonix,FR

"...Skiing is a dance, and the mountain always leads". Author Unknown

The time in Chamonix was above my any expectations. It was too cool!
Two days ago got on the Aiguille Du Midi, 3.842 meters, the highest peak of Mount-Black mountain massif. I am brave and crazy but there were few moments when I thought about Heaven more often then I usually do J
The view was spectacular: glaciers, Mere du Glass, high mountain tops, the clouds and the sun…Well, probably I can say that I was in the clouds for few hours.
Then together with my friends we skied, skied, skied. So now, I can officially declare:” The skiing season of 2008 is OPEN!!!!” Yoohoo!!!
Chamonix in the winter it’s all about skiing. I had such a blast!!! If You have never flown down hill from a mountain, you probably will not fully understand what I am talking about.
Skiing is about life, joy, speed, sunshine and adrenaline. Anybody interested?
We had lunch in nice restaurants right on the edge of sharp mountains, we have tried all the slopes. I got a new nick name “Black Diamond”. I am wondering why? J
I got to love Chamonix, the people and the beautiful landscape. It’s a little town with many lights, coquette streets, fancy shops and hospitable locals with funny French accent, a town hidden in a valley of Mont-Blanc.
Tomorrow we are getting in our 4*4 Mitsubishi Warrior and heading back to London. Long and exciting way ahead. Why long?1000 km.Why exciting? Crossing all the France, English Channel and many other things. Two more days in London and then …back to the “real world”.

Good bye Chamonix. Until next time.
Next stop---London. The Queen is waiting for me.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

French New Year

"Great things are done when men and mountains meet"

William Brake, English Poet, Painter, Engraver.

Now I am in Chamonix, Mont-Blanc ( in the right, you can check the web cam)--the coolest ski resort of France! Well, yeah, I know, from London to here is quite some distance. Couple days ago together with my friends we decided to celebrate New Year's Eve in a nice area with real snow. So, we got in the car and we hit the road. I'll admit, we didn't do too much planning on that. Checked some stuff on-line, packed and we are.

The view can't be expressed in words. It's fascinating. Brilliant white snow, high mountains surrounding the little town of Chamonix, located about 80 km from Geneva (Switzerland), skiers and snowboarders everywhere, happy people, children's giggle...I love it.

Tomorrow we're gonna take the ski lift to go to the highest top of Mont-Blank. Tomorrow I'll be on Aiguille du Midi, 3.842 meters above you:) There are sharp mount edges, mountain crystal lakes and several glaciers. Lots of new things for me.

Ski afterwards, of course.

"Bonne Anne 2008! "

Other English stuff

“We all are worms but I am a glowing one…”
Winston Churchill

On Saturday I went and visited the cabinet and war rooms where W. Churchill stayed during Second World War. Yep, today is a great museum. The accommodations considered as bomb proofed shelters for key people during the War were luxury for those days but are wild for nowadays. It was fascinating to be where the history was made. Winston Churchill was a great man and a real English gentleman.

Before going to the Churchill’s museum I went to the Buckingham Palace. Saw changing the guards. Also near by the Castle saw 20 soldiers riding on the horses as been part of the Queen’s Guard. I loved watching them: all were alike with elegant English pride and self-confidence.

In the evening met my friends and went around the Thames rives. Saw the Big-Ben, London’s Eye, drover on the London’s Bridge, saw the MI5 (yes, you know, that place where I am working at? I hope you still remember that I am BONDcev. Tony BONDcev. Can’t reveal you more info on that. It’s classified)

In the evening passed by Harrods. It’s a beautiful huge store with thousands of light on. It’s the most expensive store of London. The cheapest socks are about 70 British pounds which is over 100 Euros (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!).

Bus drivers who are real Champions of driving those double deckers on the narrow streets are always very nice to all people and crazy tourists asking for directions. Also, they use the horn rarely. Probably many of them have not discovered that their bus has a very loud horn which can drive crazy pedestrians and other driversJ

I think I am getting used with left side driving but still believe it’s crazy.

Will have to admit that not only English blondes are hot but also those “made in” Sweden, Norway and Poland. Oh, yeah, in a metropolis like London You can see many beauties. They are just charming and sweeeeet…I’ll stop here. More details in a private conversation J

I’ll be back, baby!