Let me tell you a little more about myself. I absolutely love traveling! If I'm not traveling, I'm researching travel. I'm even starting a course to become a travel agent. With all that being said I hate flying, I suffer from anxiety, and I am a horrible worrier. Thanks to pills prescribed by my doctor I am able to fly without completely freaking out. I made it to London with very little problems however once I was there my anxiety hit! All week long I had anxiety attacks, and then exhaustion from the attacks. I do not take medication for it and usually can calm myself down via breathing, meditation, working out, or talking with family and friends.
This morning I was pretty tired from everything and just enjoyed a slow start to my day. There are so many sights that I would have loved to rush to in London but sometimes you just need to listen to your body and mind and take a step back.
To start my day I ventured to the nearby Tate Modern Museum (one of my favorite museums). The lines to see the special exhibits were pretty long and I had plans in the afternoon so I opted for the "free" exhibits (I did make a 10 euro donation before entering). I love contemporary art, sculptures, and pieces that make us think about more than our eyes see. I haven't had the opportunity lately but when I'm home I create abstract paintings with a variety of mediums. I am constantly inspired by the amazing pieces of artists as well as unique perspectives from the places we visit.
London can be an expensive city but I love that everyone can experience a piece the art community for free. Here's an article from Visit London about the 23 free museums in London (keep in mind that donations are appreciated).
I took in a little more of London while slowly making my way to the Sanderson Hotel for my afternoon tea. I was thrilled that the sun was out and the temperatures were warming enough for me to wear one of my favorite dresses.
Prior to arriving in London I made an online reservations for one at the Mad Hatters Afternoon Tea. I checked in to the restaurant and quickly used to the restroom to wash up. I opted for a table inside since it was still a little chilly outside. My server welcomed me and presented me with cards and bottles of the various types of teas I could order. Tip: you are able to order a pot of tea in one flavor and when finished try another flavor. I ordered my tea along with a glass of champagne. I was happy to see that the restaurant offered a vegan menu (no need for Lactaid today) but unfortunately I was slightly disappointed.
The atmosphere is lovely, the place settings adorable, the service professional and the food appearance is whimsical. My disappointment was in the flavors of the food. For the savory dishes the scotch egg was very good but the rest of the sandwiches were overwhelmed by avocado. The sweet items were mixed. The meringues were too soft and ended up being chewy (Meringue cookies should have a crunchy exterior while the inside is tender), the marshmallows were too sticky but the cakes were very good. My time at the restaurant was relaxing afternoon and even though it wasn't perfect, I would go back and try their regular menu.
I made my way back to the hotel via cab and spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing with a movie and glass of wine.
When Greg got out of work we crossed the street and decided to try some tapas at Camino Bankside. We were seated right away even without a reservation. We ordered a couple of cocktails and perused the menu. Our server came back with some olives for us and we opted for the tomato bread, padron peppers, Iberico de belotta ham, baby squid, octopus, and patatas bravas.
The Iberico ham is always delicious and I do enjoy eating it on its own but it's also very nice with the tomato bread. The squid was hot and crispy, the peppers were tender and not overly hot, and the octopus was tender. The patatas bravas were tasty but a little on the sweet side. At first it was a little off putting to me (I prefer mine to be completely savory) but once you combined both sauces it was satisfying.
We made our way back to the hotel but did stop at the small M&S store for more water and snacks. We did frequent this small grocery store throughout our time in London and can recommend it.