Flying High in London Town

In March, we took the Guides to London.

We went up on the train, which was very exciting (although not nearly as exciting as the first time we did it with children, I will admit).

The Guides split off into two groups – the older ones wanted to go to Madam Tussauds and Oxford Street, while the younger ones went off to the London Eye, looking at the street performers on the Southbank, and to Pax Lodge.

I was with the younger group.

While we were there, we worked on the LaSER London Challenge badge.  We got points for seeing various sights, travelling on different forms of transport, and a bonus for doing it all in one day.

It’s a good badge, and reasonably easy to plan your day around it so that everyone achieves it.

So, we started our different forms of transport with the train, of course, and then we took the tube to Waterloo, and walked to the London Eye.  We did have to argue quite hard to point out that the London Eye itself was NOT a form of transport, given that you don’t actually go anywhere…

IMG_6984

It was pretty early when we arrived, so the Southbank performers hadn’t really got going yet.  Although there was a guy on the beach building furniture out of sand and proclaiming that we should all vote for the Beach Party in the upcoming elections.

He was pretty enthusiastic, but I’m not sure if he realised that Guides are too young to vote.

When it was our time for the London Eye, we got a pod to ourselves – a very sensible move on the part of the queue-organisers.

IMG_6997We had some Promises at the very top, and then everyone decided they would all renew their Promise.  We didn’t laugh too much at the one who accidentally renewed her Brownie Promise!

I think what surprised me about the Eye was how quickly it seemed to go.  I was expecting it to be slightly slower, I think.

Definitely a good experience.  Afterwards we went to the 4D experience – they throw things at you during the film (which is already 3D).

IMG_7019Entertaining.  Everyone came out with fake snow in their hair.

Then we found some street artists…

IMG_7026And walked over the river, past the Houses of Parliament and along to Downing Street.

Where the girls proceeded to ask the poor policeman a gazillion and one questions.  He was incredibly patient and very friendly.  Thank you Dave-the-policeman!

IMG_7040Tired out of our minds, we took the bus and then another tube to Pax Lodge.  We could have done it all on the tube, but we wanted more transport for our challenge!

At Pax we had a sit down and a snack, a tour, a pinning ceremony, and a phone box challenge.

How many Guides can you fit in a phone box?
How many Guides can you fit in a phone box?

I’m honestly not sure which was the most favourite bit.

Then it was time for a quick tube back to Paddington, to meet up with the older Guides and have dinner at our favourite Lebanese restaurant.

It seems to be becoming something of a tradition to go to that restaurant if we’re in London at the right time – it’s right next to Paddington, has good food and friendly staff, and they seem to be able to cope with large numbers of excited girls.

It was a very full day.  I’m pretty certain at least one person fell asleep on the train on the way home.  But we all had a lot of fun, and we saw some exciting things.

And the girls have ticked off their first World Centre.  Unfortunate side effect – now they want to go to Our Cabaña.  I’m not sure I’m ready to take Guides to Mexico just yet!

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