(Lauren and Tessa sitting on our London flat window ledge looking across the street to the park)
Our flight to London was bumpy, to say the least. Let me start from the top. We had an amazing time at the Sedgwicks' home in Maryland for a Jewkes Family Reunion, but as reunions somehow always manage, there was an epidemic stomach bug that passed between most of the 57 relatives present. We thought we had escaped it when we packed our 12 bags, 12 carryons and 6 of us into a van for the D.C. Airport on Wednesday morning. We were so excited to begin our adventure in London!
(Below is the video of our family's song for the big talent show...we sang "How Can I Be?"...so proud of Kate for learning the ukulele and Taylor for providing some excellent harmonies)
After boarding the plane, getting comfortable, and showing the girls the thrill of having so many movies at their fingertips for the next 7 hours, we settled in and took some Melatonin. Brian and I were seated next to each other, Kate and Tessa were directly behind us and Taylor and Lauren were across our aisle. A couple of hours later, I'm woken up to "Taylor is throwing up all over the aisle!"...it was everywhere. As soon as the nicest flight attendants cleaned up her mess, Brian asked Lauren if she was going to throw up too and she said "yes" followed by an avalanche of vomit into her lap. Taylor threw up once more but made it to the toilet. Lauren, poor girl, threw up several more times, one of which was just as we were de-planing. Which is also when Tessa decided to throw up all over herself. We hustled off the plane in our sleep-deprived and sickly condition.
Somehow we made it safely through passport and visa checks with no more vomiting- too bad because we were well-equipped with British Airways waste bags. The kids were so tough- even the sick ones had to walk through the airport with their hands completely full of stuff. While we were waiting to collect our bags, I took Lauren to the bathroom and as we were walking, she threw up all over the airport floor. I rushed her to a corner to let her finish and headed off to the bathroom. Oh my goodness.
After retrieving our bags and finding our car service, we were finally on the home stretch to our new city! London greeted us with sunny skies and perfect weather. As we approached the city center, I kept thinking "I cannot believe we get to live here"...it was such a good feeling.
We drove to our flat in St. John's Wood, got a first (for me and the kids) look at our new home, and happily left most of our luggage there in SJW. Too exhausted for our planned introduction to our little corner of London, we made our way to our Marylebone hotel (where we would stay for the next couple of nights until our rental furniture arrived), took baths, and then totally crashed for a few hours. After forcing ourselves to wake up, we headed out for some dinner and then taxied to Hyde Park, where we played, relaxed, walked around and soaked in London for a couple of hours. It was so fantastic to finally be here.
The kids first taxi ride. Poor Lauren is obviously still not feeling well and covered in throw-up.