Family Adventures

12 Hours In London

Recently, my daughter, my brother and I spent 12 hours in London. My family and I are planning a special trip for the summer and we need to get our passports renewed. Keep in mind that this trip was unplanned and very last minute.

Background

A few weeks back my mum and I were talking about Nigeria. She was saying she wants to go to Nigeria for the summer and she would love it if my daughter, my siblings and I went with her. I haven’t visited Nigeria in like over 10 years. With the whole drama I have been through with school and finding work etc, I felt it’s time to take a break. So I agreed to renew my passport and apply for Sasha-Ann too. We placed an application online, and then we had to attend an appointment in the Nigerian Embassy in London to complete the application process.

Planning A Last Minute Trip

Everything was very last minute. We filled in the application last week and was given a date for this week. Mum and I started panicking because we didn’t think it would be so soon. We had to look for transportation and possible accommodation. The application was sent on Thursday and the appointment was on Monday. Like how is that possible?

We spent the rest of the week looking for a cheap hotel and debating on whether we should spend the weekend in London or make it a quick 24 hours trip. Guys, I will be missing classes for this trip. Which I was not happy about. London is not cheap at all. We looked at flights, which will take us there and return on the same day. Prices were ridiculous, £300-£700!!!

Are you serious? Its just London, only 2 hrs away from Scotland. What the heck you mean £700?? We tried the train service, £300 – £400. Seriously, where I am going? It’s just London and they are giving me prices of a holiday to Spain or something. The only affordable choice was a coach, which was £120 for a return journey. I don’t like travelling by bus, let alone travelling on the bus with a 5-year-old for 12 hours.

The Journey To London 

The Journey from Aberdeen to London was as expected – eventful. We departed at 7:00 pm and was due to arrive in London at 6:30 am in the morning. The seats were very uncomfortable. I couldn’t believe I was going the spend 12 hours on this bus. Sasha was very content though. No complaining whatsoever. I guess that was a good thing because there’s nothing worse than travelling with a child who is not comfortable.

Somewhere along the road, the bus fire alarm went off! Guys, my heart was pounding. Like I could feel like feel coming out of my chest. All I could think was ‘we’re going to die’. The driver stopped the bus to investigate the problem. Someone was smoking in the toilet! Like seriously!! Can’t believe a grown man would do such stupid thing like this. Anything could have happened. He apologised to everyone on the bus.  The journey went on and peacefully, Sasha had already gone to dreamland. Until the bus stopped again!

What could go wrong this time? Well, turned out that the engine had a fault and stopped. It’s late at night, dark, and very cold and the bus stopped. Could this night get any worse? The bus driver had made an arrangement for another bus. We waited for 30 – 45 minutes for the new bus to board. We got on the bus and the rest of the night was smooth.

London

Finally, we arrived in London at 8 am in the morning. The first thing I notice was how enormous the buildings were in London. I felt so tiny. We went straight to the Embassy and started queuing as we were expecting a long queue. Luckily there were only 2 families on the queuing already. We waited until the open time at 9:30 am. The queue had increased to at least 50 people.

The Embassy open and everyone went in to get things sorted. It was a long process getting things done, sometimes I think they did not know what they were doing at the Embassy. Their customer services were awful as staff were rude, the waiting area was dark and dirty, not enough chairs as people were standing. It’s an Embassy for goodness sake! There was no refreshment for those who waited all morning outside. They really should do better.

After 3 hours, we were told to come back in 2 weeks time to collect the passports. I was shocked because normally they would give you your passport there and then or have it delivered through the post. At this point, my daughter and my brother were very hungry and tired. So we agreed and left.

Exploring London

We went to get something to eat and toured around the centre. Soon after, I went to our hotel (Holiday Inn) with my daughter, and my brother went to do more sightseeing. He took alot of pictures which can be viewed on my Youtube channel. My daughter and I had a much-needed rest our the hotel room. The customer services were lovely. I loved the layout and decor. The hotel was located right opposite London City Airport. You can see the planes flying and landing through the windows.

Our Journey back to Scotland was very smooth, unlike the journey from Scotland. We left London at 23:45 pm and arrived home at 12:50 pm. Besides I was glad to get home though as I missed my bed so much.

Therefore, I want to end this post by saying London is beautiful, it is hard to believe the horrible things you hear in the news happened in this city. I know London is a big city and I have only been to 5% of the city but from what I can see, I would like to live there one day. This trip was a short one, but I enjoyed exploring it. I think it is another way to take a short break.  Everyone should go visit London.

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