For Mirinda’s birthday, she decided she’d like to go and visit Greenwich, walk around some flats, have tapas for lunch…as you do. And so, that’s exactly what we did.
Following a lovely long lie in, we made our way to the wharf in order to catch the ferry across the river (and east a couple of stops). I was immediately put on guard by the ticket seller telling me that it should be okay for one (they count people on and off because they have quite a strict limit). I quickly explained that it was two (Mirinda has a season ticket) and the ticket seller looked querulous. She checked with the big ticket collector standing just behind me. He suggested it would be okay for two.
As we waited for the ferry (which arrived late) another four people turned up. As they fiddled about with some sort of tablet device, taking photos of one of them whose birthday it was (coincidence), I was thinking, very loudly, if there was only room for two, we were getting on and these people could swim for all I cared.
The ferry arrived and the boat-boy was taken aside by the ticket collector who told him we were allowed the first two places. What a lovely chap! Anyway, as it turned out, there were heaps of free seats on the ferry and there was no need for any wrestling or fisticuffs or anything else even remotely embarrassing.
We arrived at Greenwich to a wall of people. They were blocking the ferry exit ramp because they didn’t have their tickets ready. That was our first taste of the crowds out to have a good Friday. Or a Good Friday, depending on your personal preference and belief system.
We stood by the Cutty Sark, weighing up our options.
Mirinda was a bit hungry but wasn’t sure whether to go walking first. I reminded her that there were a lot of people in Greenwich and we may not get in anyway so why not try and then take it from there. She thought this was a workable idea so we headed for the San Miguel.
As it turned out, this was a very good decision. When we entered the restaurant, we had a choice of just about every table. By the time we left, the staff were sending people away, telling them there was a 45 minute wait for a table. Our timing was impeccable. As was the food. We had six delicious tapas dishes (four to share and oysters for Mirinda and grilled sardines for me) and our waiter was so grumpy, we could have been back in Madrid.
Completely full of Spanish nosh, we headed over to the river to check out a new apartment complex being built and almost completely sold. A great location with a Waitrose deliberately close at hand. Interestingly, between the main tourist area of Greenwich and this delightfully expensive apartment building are council estates. So bad, they have to post silly signs like this one:
I’m fairly certain there’s not many dog owners who have successfully taught their animals to use toilet facilities. If you ignore Bruce, I suppose. But this is the sort of ridiculous thing you often see put up around low at heel estates. Don’t ask me why. Back at home, where the civilised people live, it’s enough to tell dog owners to bag it and put it in a bin.
Still, the block of flats was very impressive and the view over the river, wonderful. We then headed up the High Street and found an extremely quiet part of Greenwich. It was like one moment the noise was horrendous and all pervading and then, suddenly, we turned a corner and there was nothing. I have to say, it was very pleasant.
We finished the day with a wander through Waterstones, a purchase of some lovely vintage sweets in a vintage sweet shop and, finally, the DLR back to Crossharbour.
A lovely, if somewhat tourist intensive, day.