london_subway

The London-weekend was really nice - the city is beautiful, the spring is starting slowly and some friends waiting there. So in general all the requirements for a fabulous weekend are there. But even though everything was arranged perfectly, the result was a bit more complicated than expected.

It started with a short SMS from British Airways, about one week before we wanted to go, which said: “Unfortunately your flight from London to Helsinki on Sunday is canceled”. This is not the kind of message you are happy to get one week before your 2 12 days weekend-trip. We directly tried to contact BA over the telephone - unfortunately all the other x-thousend people, who got the message in the same moment, had the same idea, as the stewardesses were on strike from Sunday to Tuesday that same week, when we were supposed to fly back. After being not really successful on that way, we tried to rebook the flight online. Nice idea, but the only flight, which was offered, was on Tuesday, after the strike. As we both had to work that week this wasn’t an option. Finally we could cancel the BA flight and we found a flight with easyjet on Monday morning, so that I was able to work a whole workday in the afternoon. Puhh…that went somehow well!

But we didn’t have the luck on our side. During the week before we wanted to leave, a work-trip brought me to Berlin. I came home on Thursday night in a snowstorm, so that we needed two attempts to land safely in Helsinki. On the taxi-ride home I felt a bit weird in my stomach, but I thought, it was because of all the stress in Berlin and on the way back - but it wasn’t. I had a flue, threw up and had to stay home on Friday instead of going to work. I layed the whole day in bed, without being able to do anything, until our flight left around nine. We arrived close to midnight in London (London time) and Juanma awaited us at a train station in the center and brought us to our home for the weekend.

The Saturday we woke up relatively early, and as I felt much better, we started our London sight-seeing tour, visiting the tower bridge, St. Paul, Tate, some cosy small harbor, several parks, a market, Big Ben and the area around it, Buckingham palace and much more. It was a really nice day and Juanma showed and explained us a lot. It was wonderful. At night we joined then Mikes birthday party and found ourself in a japanese karaoke in the middle of London. It wasn’t like the usual places, where one person in the middle of a bar makes a fool of him- or herself in front of unknown people. Instead it was a small place in some basement under a restaurant, where one could rent a room for 6-10 people and where you could sing with your friends in a private atmosphere. Sounds strange, but it is actually a loooot of fun. We came home at around 5 after a really long, but fantastic day in London. Poor Juanma had to suffer, because we occupied his bed and he had to sleep on the sofa that and the following night.

Unfortunately on Sunday Annika had the same flu, I had on Friday, so that she had to stay home in the bed and couldn’t taste Juanma’s breakfast/lunch with pizza and a tortilla. In the afternoon Juanma took me and another friend to a market, where we had a coffee. Before we went home, we walked a little bit more through the city. Our plane left between 6 and 7 in the morning, so we had to start our journey at 3 and arrived in Helsinki at noon, tired but happy about a really nice Saturday in London. Even though not everything went perfectly, it was fantastic that Annika could meet Juanma, and that we had the chance to spend a really nice time together in such a wonderful city. Thanks again to Juanma, who supported us a lot, who made a really good job as a tourist guide and who showed us nice small places, which I hadn’t seen before, even though I was several times already there. Thanks to Mike as well, who introduced us into japanese karaoke!

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