Goodbye London, Goodbye Europe

October 22-23, 2012 (Monday and Tuesday)

Our last full day in London was spent resting up and charging our sleep accounts in preparation for the long-haul flight back to the United States. Although I slept very well on the Caledonian Sleeper from Aberdeen to London, JC did not and quickly resumed her slumber once we checked back into our hotel. I stayed up for a little while, stopping by Sainsbury’s to buy some food and catching up on our finances, but eventually I succumbed as well. It was that kind of a day, actually our first foggy day in London:

London Fog
London fog

Eating ramen had become a sort of ritual for us during Adventure 2012, having enjoyed bowls in Hong Kong, Tokyo, and Paris. Of course, we couldn’t leave London without trying the local ramen. That evening, we tried Tonkotsu Ramen in Soho:

Ramen at Tonkotsu, London
Ramen at Tonkotsu, London

The ramen was good, but the thing to write home about was the cod katsu (sorry, scarfed it down before even thinking about taking a photo), a flaky white fish in a light, crisp batter. I salivate just thinking about it. I also got a chance to enjoy a Yamazaki 12-yo single malt.

The evening was spent packing and enjoying one last Coke from the tap; I had had one that night in Aberdeen and it was one of the best Cokes I ever had, and this one was just as good. Must be something about UK draught Cokes.

A Pint of Coke
That Coke…

The next morning, we had a nice room-service lunch before taking the Underground one last time to Paddington, where we took the Heathrow Express to the airport. Everything went smoothly, and I even splurged on another magazine at the airport.

After 3 weeks in Europe and 2 months away, we were finally heading back to America. I’d never been to New York City before, but I was looking forward to being back in my home country, being around American culture again. It’s just nice to be able to say something freely without having to think too hard beforehand, knowing that people will understand you, and you them. At the same time, we were glad to have finally experienced Europe, to see and smell and feel for ourselves what we had previously only read in books or seen in movies. It was a priceless experience that we will treasure for the rest of our lives.

Next: New York City, Arrival and First Day