Moored in Paddington Basin for a few days

I’ve really enjoyed the few days we’ve spent moored in Paddington. It’s an ideal base for exploring London and there’s quite a bit to look at around the basin. Just down from the entrance to Paddington Station stand these two larger than life sculptures by Sean Henry. We passed them several times before I got around to taking a photograph.

StandingManWalkingManThe basin seems to specialise in unusual bridges. There’s the famous rolling one – we were moored right beside that and were lucky enough to see it being raised.

FullyOpen HalfWay NearlyDown Down

A few hundred yards from this they’ve installed a brand new bridge. When it’s down it couldn’t look more dull.

TimeLapseBridgeShut

When it’s raised…….

TimeLapseBridgeOpen TimeLapseBridgeFromtheSide

… it’s quite spectacular!

We saw Ellie off on Tuesday morning and Gordon headed off for his visit to Greenwich. I had a lovely quiet day on the boat, baking, blogging and just relaxing. It had been a fairly hectic few days and it was lovely to get some time doing not very much at all.

I’m making a stained glass panel for Jim and Joan on nb Two Jays and have been looking for a way of getting some odds and ends like solder and lead. I can order them on line but it’s a bit of a pain getting them delivered. After a bit of research I’d found out that there’s a stained glass shop in Camden so Wednesday morning saw us heading off there.  A visit to Chinatown for a dim sum lunch and an ‘Orange Wednesday’ trip to the cinema to see Guardians of the Universe rounded off a great day.

ChinatownWe also managed to get to St Paul’s Cathedral, which is somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit. Unfortunately you’re not allowed to take photographs anywhere inside the cathedral so I’ve not got any shots of the incredibly lavish interior. The bit of the visit I enjoyed most was climbing the 528 stairs to the Golden Gallery. Well I didn’t actually enjoy the climb – that was exhausting – but the view from the top was incredible.

StPaulsPanorama2 StPaulsPanorama1

LookingDown

Our final day in London was more or less entirely spent drinking! We went across to Zeitgeist, the German pub in Vauxhall that we visited with Jamie last Sunday. They do an all you can eat buffet on Friday afternoon and this, along with Kostrizer black lager drew us back there for a ‘Happy Friday’ drink. After a couple there we caught the tube back to Paddington before the rush hour started and had another couple of drinks in The Victoria. On the way home we called into The Royal Exchange, a great pub just off Praed Street at the back of the canal basin. It was here we spotted Jonathan Ross having an early evening drink, and holding court, with some of his office staff.

Jonathan RossWe were back home before 8pm but it had still been quite a session. The next morning, as we visited the sanitary station on our way out of the basin, I discovered that emptying the three toilet cassettes we’d accumulated during our stay in Paddington was a very adequate punishment for having had too much to drink the night before. At least I had the company of a pair of large and curious rats!

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