We went to the UK to watch our daughter receive her Masters in Health Economics at the University of York. This meant a trip for both of us – something we haven’t done together, for five years.
We stayed with friends, which was delightful and then at two Travelodges. We hadn’t stayed at the York Travelodge for some time, but it had been renovated and was very comfortable.
On the day of the graduation ceremony, we discovered that it had been snowing most of the night. We aren’t used to snow – yes, it snows in Galicia, but it doesn’t last long and only settles on the mountains.
The ceremony itself was lovely and thanks to my walking stick, we were offered special seats. This was much appreciated.
The ceremony started a little late and dragged on and we were in danger of losing our lunch reservation.
My mother and our son and I, ran (sort of) to the bus stop and our son phoned the restaurant and all was saved.
I have to praise the restaurant, ‘El Paradiso del Chibo’. The proprietor Gianni was wonderful, welcoming us, providing a bottle of Prosecco for us to toast our daughter and the food was divine. I’d go back there again any time – it was the finest Italian food that I’ve ever eaten.
We didn’t manage dessert, due to a family member becoming ill, but we made up for it later with cocktails at The Evil Eye, a family favourite.
Later, we returned to London and stayed at another Travelodge, near Kings Cross, which was also warm and comfortable, with excellent security and plenty of good restaurants and cafes close by.
We had a wonderful trip. The airline (Vueling was on time and very efficient). It took two days to come down from the happy high and we loved seeing our family again.
The biggest surprise was London itself. The people smiled, offered seats and were so welcoming – this is not the London that I remember and I hope this new charm offensive lasts for ever. We’ll be back…
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