Our adventure really began back in February,
when it was just an idea we thought would never happen.
Four months later, this mother/daughter trip became a reality.
One young woman fresh from her college graduation
with a lifetime of experiences to come
one not-so-young woman, knowing how rapidly the
years come and go, who wants to fit more
experiences in her lifetime
wander for 12 days in London and Paris.
Before the trip, I tried to anticipate things that could go wrong.
I brushed up on my French.
I printed out transit directions to get to our apartments in each city.
I researched ideas of places we might like to visit.
I picked up some Euros and Pounds at the bank.
More importantly, I also knew that Annie likes her solitude,
and 12 days with mom might create some tension!
How would it all work out?
I'm happy to say we had a great trip!
I feel we each had our strengths and
contributed in different ways to resolve problems.
I was definitely feeling my age.
Annie could see signs much sooner than I could,
and she was able to process things much faster too.
This was a lifesaver (more than once) when we were in a hurry to catch
a train and she would take control and shout out
which direction to turn as we hurried thru the train station.
She also came to my aid when I went to pay and
I couldn't read the lettering on those tiny coins!
I felt my age, too, when we got special attention
because of the presence of a
beautiful, friendly, smiling young woman!
It was definitely a plus that we both enjoyed the same things.
We weren't really big on doing the typical tourist things.
In fact, we were happy to see the London tourist attractions
(Big Ben, Tower Bridge, etc) from the comfort of the London Eye.
Instead, one of our goals was to eat cupcakes
at Peggy Porschen's Cake shop.
Annie thought I was infantile in London because it struck me as funny
every time we rode a certain subway,
and the proper British lady on the loudspeaker would announce
"This is a Piccadilly line service to Cockfosters!"
We did lots of shopping but bought very little.
We spent time in a park watching men play Petanque.
We discovered the convenience of Uber.
I discovered that Annie is uncomfortable in crowded places.
I realized that she needs much more sleep than I do too.
We took much-needed naps.
Annie remembered streets and surroundings
much better than I did. When I pointed something out
that I had never seen before, she'd say
"Mommmm, we've been on this street so many times already!"
I had the pleasure of teaching Annie about Princess Diana.
She hadn't known that Prince William and Prince Harry
are Diana's sons.
We rode bikes in lovely places.
We flew on broomsticks over Hogwarts.
We ate scones and clotted cream with Polly.
We ate hot dogs baked inside baguettes
and gelato formed in the shape of a rose.
We played rummy next to the Eiffel Tower.
We played rummy next to the London Eye.
I think traveling with someone, no matter who it may be,
requires each person to be patient, understanding,
flexible, and willing to do things (or not) to help make
the other person happy. You need to know that there
may be days that you wouldn't want to repeat, but
so many days that you will never forget!
I will always cherish these 12 days exploring London and Paris
with my daughter
and I feel so fortunate to have had this opportunity!
Thank you, Annie!