London – Day 8 & 9

I ended my stay in London with a low-key day in Potters Bar.  I spent the day preparing for my trip home, laundry was the main focus of the day and a few odds and ends.  It was a very nice day with Clara and her children.  Packing was a pain, but it always is.  I had mixed feelings about leaving  Clara and Eric were perfect hosts and I had a great time with them, but I was feeling travel weary and was missing Inez and the kids.  I also was not looking forward to the ordeal of flying home, airplanes are never comfortable and I was going to be spending a lot of time in them.  I really cannot complain though, I’d rather fly and get home in a day, than have to take a steamer across the ocean for weeks at a time.  The hour of my departure arrived, I woke up at 4 AM finished up my last minute packing and organizing at was off to the train station by ten after five.  I caught the train in Potters Bar to Findsbury Park, where I connected to the Tube (Metro as we called them in Italy) Piccadilly Line and rode it out to Heathrow Airport, it took about 1 1/2 hours to get there.  I had plenty of time to check my luggage and go through security before the plane started loading.  The flight was just the way I liked them, uneventful, I did watch Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland” and thought it was good.  The CGI is a little weird, though I think it is weird in most movies so that isn’t saying much.  The movie seemed to go very fast.  I tried sleeping a bit, but as you may know, airplanes are not really designed for that purpose.  While en-route to Detroit my connecting flight to Salt Lake City was canceled and Delta rerouted me to catch a flight to Chicago and from there to Salt Lake City.  The problem was I would only have 7 minutes to get from Terminal A to Terminal E, which wasn’t possible, and they were having problems with the weather affecting the flights in and out of Chicago too.  So I was transferred to a later flight that went straight to Salt Lake.  I had to sit around the airport for a couple extra hours, in the end I think it worked out better than trying to go through Chicago. I took the extra time to explore the airport a little and get some photo-ops with Il Gatto.  He enjoyed them.  The time for my flight arrived and I got on the plane, we ended up sitting at the gate 40 minutes past when we were supposed to leave because of an error with the catering for the flight.  I was at the point where I didn’t care and just wanted to get moving toward home again.  I was in the exit row, and while it was nice to have the legroom my seat didn’t recline an made it that much more uncomfortable.  The pilots were able to make up some time in the air and we landed about 9:30 Saturday night.  Inez picked me up at the airport, and I now understand the meaning of the saying, “A sight for sore eyes!”  We got to the house around 11 PM.  I also now know how to fit 25 hours into a single day.  I got up at 4 AM Saturday morning and got home at 11 PM, after traveling for 25 hours…  It was great to sleep in my own bed and shower in my own shower.  It is also great to be home with the Wife and Kids.  I had wonderful experiences in Italy and England, I got to see amazing artworks and to experience them as they were meant to bee seen, which makes all the difference in the world.  I got to experience other cultures and eat amazing food, and make wonderful friends.  I am so happy and grateful for the help and support I got, to be able to go on this trip, it is an experience that I will take with me all of my life, and has affected me and my art in ways I have not discovered yet.  I hope you have enjoyed seeing the pictures from this trip as much as I have enjoyed being there to take them.

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