Tuesday, June 4, 2013

London Hostels

I'm writing this on the bus heading to Stonehenge now. It's been an...exciting...two days.

The hostel we booked last minute (Tessa keeps reminding me that technically I alone booked this one.) well, it's pretty crappy. After a haggaring 24+ hours of travel, we stumbled in an hour after the earliest checkin time, and they didn't have our rooms ready yet. Other off putting things about W14 Kensington Hotel:

-Showers/toilet rooms are really moldy.
-My bed is wet for some reason. Was even before I got there, but this morning when I realized it hadn't dried, whatever it is, I got weirded out a lot. Still working on that problem.
-The room lockers are about half the size as our backpacks.

-There is no communal kitchen, but more of a hallway with a stove with 14 different buttons.
-The staff are very unfriendly and it's all business to them, not the happiness of their customers.

We sort of figured out this used to be a hotel and they are turning it back into one in a few months, so while that's not really an excuse, it explains why it doesn't seem very hostel-like. 

After some emergency searching, and to no really avail, we decided to stick it out the next three days. After all, the next one has to be better, and this is already paid for.

Yesterday evening we found a nearby Tesco (grocery store) and shopped for ingredients  And using the hallway-kitchen on the first floor (not ground floor) managed to make some pasta and garlic broccoli sauté. You could smell it throughout the hostel, which was an improvement to the place, believe me. While we were preparing our meal, an older Italian man was making his own pasta and we exchanged hellos. He was staying there for three months because he had work nearby, I think. His accent was extremely strong.

This morning my Stonehenge tour company called, and I emailed them back, asking what the call was about. They told me that my tomorrow-tour got cancelled and to let them know if we wanted to reschedule for the day after (when we leave for Paris) or a refund. 

So I'm on the verge of frustrated-freaking-out mode because seriously, seeing Stonehenge was the single reason I wanted to go to London this trip. Tessa realized it was only noon, and they had afternoon tours too, so we quickly called them back using the hostel phone (50p a minute) and they were able to fit us in for today! (In a two-minute conversation!)

And after a long confusing avoiding-construction-on-foot route, we made it to the station in time, out of breath and excited, because we are going to Stonehenge!

Probably the most disgusting thing I've seen in a foreign grocery store. Um. Ew. It's a SHAKE.

Walk-up to the hostel of crap:

While we were on the coach to Stonehenge, cars kept passing us and I had a mini heart attack every time I saw no one in the drivers seat! Oh wait, it's on the other side! Yeah I never got used to it.



  1. omg! a skittle shake made just for Sammy!

  2. Nice post! Thanks the great information, I'll be back to check up for an update!

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  3. I'm glad your Stonehenge trip panned out! It would have been a bummer to have missed that! Yeah, I have heard you can't get that close, but it's cool you were there! My friend just kind of drove past it on her way to Scotland haha Have you had Perry's? My London buddies insist it's an imperative.