Yesterday was our first day in the UK. We flew in on Aer Lingus, which proved to be a perfectly capable carrier. My only nit might be that they didn't have per-seat individual TV screens, which are pretty handy for long-haul transatlantic flights; however, we'd brought along a full complements of iPods and laptops which kept us more than occupied for the crossing. Regrettably, neither Laura nor I were able to sleep very well on the flight, although the kids each curled up and sacked-out (we were lucky enough to have two empty seats in our row).
We transfered in Dublin for the final 1hr leg to Heathrow, which was pleasantly uneventful. The only real hitch in the flights was that our meticulously weighed-and-balanced suitcases didn't arrive in London with us. We really had no cause for complaint, as we hadn't exactly looked forward to lugging 375lbs of luggage, plus 60lbs of carry-on, through Heathrow; our hired taxi driver heaved a similar sigh of relief at finding us so unencumbered.
Our driver took us to Maidenhead, where we were able to find our lodgings without too much trouble. Unfortunately, the apartment complex didn't have an onsite office, so I had to find a working phone to call our agent to meet us with the keys; fortunately a kindly manager at a local phone store allowed me to call from his desk. In 30min or so, our property agent met us, showed us up to our flat, and gave us a helpful orientation to the area. It turned out we didn't think to ask all the right questions -- it later took awhile to figure out how the phone worked (hello GoTalk), which I needed in order to get the DSL modem working, and we're still eyeing the unfamiliar knobs on the oven and shower with dubious apprehension.
While Laura waited for the luggage to arrive, the kids and I took a walk down High Street in search of supper. We picked up some brochures for banks and cell phones, then bought some carry-out at the West Cornwall Pasty shoppe...hmm, steak and stilton!
Finally, it was time to crash hard, as we were all wobbly with exhaustion and had absolutely no idea what time it was (my laptop was still in Seattle time, the iPods were Orlando, and for some reason our apartment stove thought it was in Novobirsk.)
So far this morning, only Christopher and I are up. He found some familiar cartoons on the telly, and I'm...well, talking to you :-) Probably time to go hunt for some breakfast, so...more to come!
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