Around the World With the ArvaMonts


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After staying up until 2:30AM to finish packing, we got up at 5:30AM to get ready and out the door for our 9AM flight to London.  We arrived in London at 22:00, after flying all day.  (It is strange flying to Europe during the day since most Europe bound plans leave Chicago in the later afternoon or evening.)  Immigration was a breeze, but we had more difficulty in baggage claim.  Newenka's suitcases came right off, then came Anika’s and then Yannis’, but Tasha’s didn’t come and didn’t come and didn’t come.  So we ended up having to stand in the lost luggage line at midnight on our very first day of the trip.  (Tasha was a bit upset, but luckily she had a change of clothes in her backpack.  Her suitcase arrived the next day.  Phew!)  We think we’ll need a pool about how many suitcases we will have get delayed over the course of the year! 



<<<Waiting for a taxi after midnight at Heathrow

Tasha actively working on reducing our book volume ;-).











Dorking and our "Quintessential English Sunday"

Our first excursion in England was to visit our friends the Gazzards in the lovely hamlet of Dorking.  (Yes, Yannis asked what people from Dorking are called.  Nick suggested "Dorks," with the smirk of someone who grew up in Dorking.) 







 On the Train to Dorking, trying not to fall asleep! 












<<< The first church in the movie "Four Wedding and A Funeral" is in Dorking! 



In Dorking we had a lovely pub lunch, hiked the local hill and visited with Nick, Karen, Emma and Matt.  It took the kids all afternoon to warm up, and they were just starting to really have fun when we had to drag them away! 





<<< The tree Anika is standing in front of is a Monkey Puzzle!  The whole trunk and all the branches are covered with spines, thus the name! 














We visited the British Museum:




We checked out King's Cross Station (and we weren't the only ones!)

The fiction and                                                         the reality...


We spent a lovely day in Regent Park:



We visited the Tower of London:



We took a ferry to Greenwich

The ever popular Tower Bridge.




See those naked guys standing on the buildings?  They are apparently the result of a multi million £ art project.



The common species, "London Crane," is prevalent around the St. Paul Cathedral ;-)


Here we are standing in both the eastern and western hemispheres!  The ball on the top of the tower is dropped every day at 1200 Greenwich Mean Time, which was 13:00 hours local time, of course, because of Daylight Savings Time!!!


We gawked over Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament


We watched the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace

There's one of the guards...along with his replacement and the formal confirmation of who everyone is


And there he goes.  Though the guards seemed pretty peripheral to the whole ceremony, which included the band playing a strange selection of 5 or 6 songs, among them Over the Rainbow and the theme song from Dallas








Yannis really liked these two, he thinks they look like a pair of toy soldiers.  They are real, really!












While enjoying the proceedings with faces planted against the fence, Yannis wondered what we might look like to the guards.  This is his attempt at envisioning that.




We popped into Westminster Abbey








Of course, no photography is permitted inside the Abbey and wow is it cool inside!!!  Guess you'll just have to come to London to see it for yourselves! 










And just hanging around!!!



Anika, "Why do all the postcard show these red houses?  I haven't seen any of those.

Talk about observant - we spent the next day pointing them out to her.

"They are everywhere!" she then observed!













Tasha on the Millennium Bridge

Anika "Minding the gap!" on the Tube








Anika watching a 3-D Dinosaur movie at the Science Museum













And look at the store right around the corner from us - it sells Fazioli Pianos!

 See our favorite Fazioli Dealer.











ArvaMont World School

The poor girls had to start school right away - their vacations are when we have things scheduled that will preclude their schooling. 

At least their classroom has a nice view ;-)



We are on our way to Wales on June 16!  See Wales!

Stonehenge - at the end of the Wales page!  Click here for express service.




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Last modified: 06/13/08