6.30: Leeds station, in the dark. I am bleary eyed and holding a coffee, and it takes me back to my commuting days.
7.30: The sun rises somewhere around Doncaster. I have a magazine, a bag of crochet and the seat next to me is empty. Train travel is agreeable.
8.30: Blue skies in the Midlands. The forecast said wind and rain all day so this bodes well.
9.30: Hello Kings Cross station, hello London, hello my oldest and best friend, Abigail.
11.30 We leave John Lewis. Ah, how I love that shop.
12.30: Lunch. An early birthday treat for both of us. I've never eaten lobster before but I very much want to eat it again; it was delicious, as was the Prosecco cocktail.
1.30: We walk through Soho Square. That old style Routemaster bus was carrying a wedding party who were aiming for the tall, thin church. We had fun speculating about how and why they built such a strangely narrow shaped church, and who might be getting married there.
Clouds gather over Bloomsbury. Abigail knows this area well and she's an excellent tour guide, which is just as well as I don't have a clue where I am.
2.30: Persephone Books. I've been ordering their books online for a few years but wanted to see the shop. It's lovely. Very small but perfectly formed, with a Charleston and Bloomsbury Group feel about it. Purchases were made.
3.30: We take a taxi to Postman's Park, a tiny public park hidden in the City. One of those places that is strangely silent when you step inside from a busy street, and home to an incredibly moving monument to acts of heroism. We are delighted to find one of these old fashioned Police Public Call Posts at the entrance.
We walk to St Pauls. We go inside, thinking we might have a look around. I've never been inside. Tickets are £16 each. £16! Neither of wants to see the inside that much so we leave and go for a walk along the embankment.
I love the views along here. The sun is starting to set and the the wind is brisk.
4.30: By now we're heading towards Strand in search of a coffee shop to sit down and warm up.
5.30: And now we're at Kings Cross, looking for somewhere to have an early dinner.
6.30: I am drinking red wine.
7.30: I catch my train back to Leeds. My phone battery has died so I can't while away the journey on facebook or instagram. Too tired to read, I crochet and eavesdrop on the conversations around me.
I wanted to take a photo an hour and I almost managed it, almost. Once a year Abigail and I try to meet in London someone around our birthdays, which are a few days apart. It's become a tradition and we look forward to it every year. Sometimes we go to an exhibition if there's something we particularly want to see. We'd hoped to go up The Shard but it was fully booked - we didn't realise you had to buy tickets. That's on the list for next time, along with possible a trip to the theatre. It was a long, long day but so much fun.