The London Diaries

London is a riddle. Paris is an explanation – Ernest Hemmingway.

It’s been a little while again, hasn’t it? I’m not promising anything this time though because I’m doing what I’m doing and hoping the authenticity will shine through. That’s better than trying to force myself to write something when I don’t exactly feel like it. Yep. Same old story. I thought I’d do a bit of a travel diary of my long-awaited trip to London over the weekend. To be frank, I didn’t do anything over-exhilarating like the normal Forty-eight hours in London posts you see here, there and everywhere. I did other over-exhilarating things such as drink plenty of wine and amaretto on the Friday night, and fall asleep on the sofa fully clothed as well as put my hair in pin-curls whilst listening to my university hold their annual summer ball until the twee hours on Sunday morning.

THURSDAY

9.50am: After finishing an episode of Gossip Girl in bed (standard way to start the day), I forced myself to be productive and get everything packed and ready for my trip to London, which I had to leave for in roughly two hours. I hate to admit it, but towards the end I did rush and I hate rushing when packing. I have horrific memories of waking up at six a.m., still drunk, in Airlie Beach down under and shoving everything into my backpack, praying I’d packed my entire life into one bag.

1.48pm: The train left Liverpool Lime Street. Travel essentials included a chicken and bacon buttie from M&S, a bottle of water and Closer magazine for 99p. I wanted said magazine to last the entire journey, or at least half of it. No such luck. Half an hour later I had read it cover to cover and had little to nothing left to entertain myself with. Cue my mini nap and a little bit of note-making.

5.00pm: I made it to Whitechapel! In all the years I lived in London, I never made it to Whitechapel, and considering how much I’m obsessed with Jack the Ripper (see book review one and two), I thought I would have made it to that area sooner. Seeing university bestie Jess was a dream! She plonked me in Grind and told the manager to fill me with cocktails. I had three before I was reunited with Jess and we carried on drinking until the early close of nine o’clock!

9.45pm: It was back to our old stomping ground of Putney, aka still Jess’s stomping ground and a place full of memories for me. We went to Coat and Badge for a couple of drinks, and more catch ups, reminiscing our memories and talking about each other’s lives as well as gearing up in excitement for the upcoming wedding!

11.30pm: What’s the best way to end a night of drinking and catch ups? Maccies of course.

FRIDAY

12.15pm: Going back to University of Roehampton is always a pleasure, and a little weird now that I know literally nobody on campus. It’s like going back in time, whilst everything has changed. A hot chocolate was the first order of the day, and it was a beautiful one at that. The sun was scorching which is always a bonus and I had remembered to take my hayfever tablet, so we were off to a great start!

1.40m: A short bus ride to Putney Bridge where I saw the most gorgeous bull terrier! I wanted to kidnap him and take him home. Food was needed as food always is, and a craving for avocado took us to our place of choice (Jess’s choice, but she promised great things so I followed). Social Brew is an Australian founded place – the original avo on toast. There were Tim Tams!! I should have bought some, just for the nostalgia. The food was incredible: amazing poached eggs, lots of greens and a hint of peppery spice.

3.30pm: After whizzing around Putney shops, we stopped to get our nails done for the wedding ahead. I haven’t had anything done since before Christmas, so it was fab to actually get a little bit pampered. It’s true when they say that you feel complete after a manicure and lick of polish – or shellac, in my case. I’m looking at them now, thinking they’ll have to come off soon and I kinda don’t want them to.

5.00pm: It was definitely wine o’clock, but it was also Let’s embarrass ourselves whilst the world of Visa was down. I had been paid for a week and I nearly subconsciously convinced myself that I had somehow spent all of my wages. I did have a crazy Saturday night the week before; I don’t even know if I used my card on that night out. However, it was okay. As we all know, there was a crazy thing to do with card payments. Thank God. And that was only in the first pub, Jolly Gardeners. Cue the multiple glasses of wine for ridiculous amounts: a tenner for a large. It makes my Northern heart sad to think how expensive everything is down south. It didn’t stop me from buying them though, did it?

SATURDAY

6.40am: Waking up groggy is an understatement. I woke up fully clothed, complete with my denim jacket, on the couch. To be honest, I was still drunk and so took to talk my Instagram account’s ear off on Stories, as I like to do when I’m not 100% sober. I think I’m hilarious. Clearly. I ate some cold smiley faces from the night before, downed a glass of water and got back under my blankets.

11am: Second wake up of the day. I was still in those clothes from the day before, so I eventually got a shower to cleanse my soul of all the alcohol I’d drank and felt much better. And then, the perfect breakfast that I needed was made which were fried eggs, bacon and toast. Oh, so, good.

2.45pm: After my hangover returned with a dulled vengeance during the bus ride towards Shepherd’s Bush, we arrived at uni favourite Westfield’s! We were on a mission. Jess needed a complete outfit for the next day. I needed shoes. Guess who found theirs first? Me, in Topshop. It never lets me down in the shoe department when I need something completely last minute. The hunt was on for Jess’s outfit and we found it at 7 p.m. in New Look. A quick reroute to Topshop for bag and shoes and we were all done for the day! Five hours later…

9pm: Back at the flat in good old Roey, we ordered takeaway that was basically Nandos but better because I had double haloumi and oh my god, double haloumi needs to be ordered at every possible moment! We watched First Dates and Gogglebox – do you see what I mean about this post being the very un-classic 48 hours travel guide to London; it’s as though I’m living a normal everyday life, but in London which I think is why I always love my time there. I hardly ever go and visit tourist spots, just have a chill and a catch up with some of my favourite people.

10.30pm: I almost forgot to pre-style my hair for the big day! I sat on the couch in my pyjamas, watching Death in Paradise, curling my hair and pinning it before going to bed two hours later…

SUNDAY

7.30am: Early wake up call for the big day ahead! It was a quick shower, complete with shaving and making sure my hair was absolutely not touched in any way, shape, or form. That would have been a disaster. Then, I had to get dressed and pack my little suitcase. I was a tiny bit stressed, but excited more than anything to get going!

8.15am: As ladies of leisure (scared we might not make the train), we hailed an Uber, listened to Spice Girls and drove through the early Sunday morning traffic with a buzz in the air. The sun was glorious, as it should always be in London on route to a wedding. The next part of the journey was a little more crazy, with me just – literally just – making it onto the tube with my suitcase. A quick change at Piccadilly Circus and we were on route to London Marylebone.

9.25am: Arrived at London Marylebone with about half an hour to spare. Jess, spontaneous as she is, had to buy her ticket at the station. Me, organised as I am, already had mine printed in my handbag. I had to have my train staple from M&S: chicken and bacon sandwich and a couple of G&T cans were thrown into the carrier bag for good measure, as was a pack of Piritize because, let me tell you, hay fever has been back with a vengeance this week. Jess convinced me to have my first adult taste of coffee in the form of a Starbucks Mocha and I actually enjoyed it. It was the kinda caffeine I needed at 9.45am on a Sunday before an extremely long, eventful day and night at a wedding.

10.10am: Jess and I took our seats on the train, plonked our stuff beside us and grinned at each other in pure happiness.

And then, the journey to the Cotswolds began! An epic wedding for a stunning couple, full of laughs, booze, dancing and the happiest of tears. It’s safe to say my journey home on Monday (a long four hours by various trains) was not the brightest.

What’s your latest trip been like?

Love, Faye xo

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