When you think about it, the Thames River has been such an important part of London’s history for hundreds of years, and it still is today. It winds through the major part of the city, and from places like St. Paul’s or the Eye, you can clearly see its muddy-looking squiggle flow throughout. Quite unfortunately, however, I have had my worst experiences of this trip on the Thames, and both involved boats. Due to inner ear problems, I get intense motion sickness on boats, docks, or any up-and-down motion (so I’m definitely not the best person to go to an amusement park with). I felt somewhat guilty when the group wound up on a ferry, because I was pretty sick both times. I’m taking the time to mention my body’s somewhat gross circumstances for the sheer irony. On the most recent ride, there were dozens of tourists and several different languages to be heard on the deck, all of them taking in the beautiful views along the river – while I’m taking in the not-so-beautiful views of the deck floor. Despite the nausea, I actually found myself laughing. So many of the tourists were standing up and taking photographs, especially of London Bridge. It was lucky that we had already seen it the week before, because I couldn’t see it at all, even if I had wanted to! There were so many gorgeous views from the Thames (or so I’m told), but I spent the majority of the trip fiercely gripping the wooden handrail.
Every unfortunate story has a moral, doesn’t it? I think this story says that no matter how much you plan for a trip, even if you have every detail down to the wire, there will always be something that goes wrong. For me, it’s the inability to enjoy one of London’s most historic parts. We only have a few days left of this trip, and I must say I have enjoyed nearly every minute of it. Just don’t ever put me on a river tour of the Thames ever again.
Here’s a much lovelier picture from earlier that day at Greenwich Park, because obviously, I didn’t get one on the boat.