Day 14 - Friday 10 September - London to Aylesbury

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Got to have a slightly slow start today as we didn't need to pick the car up til middayish and checkout was 11. So caught up on as much internetty stuff as we could before we left.

Hopped on a train to the car rental place and found it quite easily and got all the paperwork sorted. Unfortunately the automatic had a big crack in the windscreen so we got stuck with a manual. We can drive manuals (we both own manuals) but when you're dealing with driving in a foreign country, not having to worry about gears makes a huge difference. The big difference between this trip and our honeymoon of course is that at least here they drive on the *correct* side of the road. The suckiest thing about the car is that the blinkers and windscreen wipers are backwards to most Australian cars. This sux *a lot* as when you want to indicate in a hurry the reflex action will turn on the windscreen wipers :( (indicating when you plenty of time is not such an issue because you have time to remember to hit the opposite lever).

So anyway, after getting honked at by impatient drivers two minutes into the trip, we managed to escape London and headed for Windsor. Didn't get to see the castle except for glimpses of it, and drove past Legoland (coming soon!) with a final destination of Runnymede and the Magna Carta memorial. £1 pay and display parking even in the middle of nowhere.

Teenage swans on the Thames at Runnymede
Teenage swans on the Thames at Runnymede

Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede
Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede

Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede
Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede

Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede
Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede

Under the roof of the Magna Carta Memorial
Under the roof of the Magna Carta Memorial

Runnymede
Runnymede

Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede
Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede

Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede
Magna Carta Memorial, Runnymede

Blackberries - yum!
Blackberries - yum!

Runnymede
Runnymede

From there headed back into Windsor to find some lunch. Found a pay and display parking station and a Subway nearby. Then fought with the Tomtom which didn't have a couple of the places in it I wanted to go to. Well it did, but under different location names.

Windsor Castle
Windsor Castle

Itty bitty parking spots in a parking station in Windsor
Itty bitty parking spots in a parking station in Windsor

So the next place I wanted to see was Picket Post Close in Martins Heron (actually Bracknell). Because it also happens to be 4 Privet Drive, Little Whinging. (!!!) I squeed lots and lots. Didn't get out of the car though cause it's a tiny culdesac and I didn't want to look toooo much like a stalker ;) There was a van and a skip out the front which didn't help either. So basically did a drive by shoot and headed off again.

Picket Post Close - aka Privet Drive Little Whinging!
Picket Post Close - aka Privet Drive Little Whinging!

Privet Drive Little Whinging
Privet Drive Little Whinging

Privet Drive Little Whinging
Privet Drive Little Whinging

Number 4, Privet Drive Little Whinging - Harry's house!
Number 4, Privet Drive Little Whinging - Harry's house!

Next we headed for Henley on Thames. Just to have a quick look really. We found a shopping centre carpark and walked down to the river and had a half pint of a couple of Brakspeare ales.

Henley on Thames
Henley on Thames

Thames River
Thames River

The Angel pub
The Angel pub

Bridge over the Thames
Bridge over the Thames

Crazy medieval buildings in Henley on Thames
Crazy medieval buildings in Henley on Thames

Next up was Privet Drive number 2, used in the Prisoner of Azkaban. This was Dowding Way, Leavesden, altho the Tomtom couldn't find that so we had to put in Watford. Approaching this I could see the purple Knight Buses across the road in the Leavesden Studios backlot. As you can imagine there was much squeeing on my part :) Got out this time and walked up the same bit of road that Harry did. There's not any swings in the little park where he first sees Padfoot but the grass is there. Also went to the end of the road and could see across into Leavesden studios and the top of the row of houses they used as Privet Drive for movies two and onwards. And one of the hangers (the great hall was built in one if the hangers and was used for all the movies).

Street in Leavesden where Harry walks before seeing Padfoot
Street in Leavesden where Harry walks before seeing Padfoot

There was a roundabout and swings setup for the movie but they're not there anymore
There was a roundabout and swings setup for the movie but they're not there anymore

Where Harry catches the Knight Bus
Where Harry catches the Knight Bus

Leavesden Studios - where Harry Potter was filmed
Leavesden Studios - where Harry Potter was filmed

Possibly sets for the Deathly Hallows movies
Possibly sets for the Deathly Hallows movies

Privet Drive set built for Chamber of Secrets
Privet Drive set built for Chamber of Secrets

Knight buses!
Knight buses!

So then we headed north-west thinking we might stop at Aylesbury or keep going depending how we felt. Just outside of Aylesbury we saw a Holiday Inn so decided to stop. After the London hotel we were very impressed at how much *space* this one has!  I completely repacked my suitcase which made me feel a bit better. The big downer is that the Internet is £15/day.. WTF?? They can take that and shove it :(

Had a beer and a snack dinner at the onsite pub, sharing the area with a wedding reception's pre dinner drinks. And spent the evening repacking suitcases and selecting images to resize for twitpics.


Geotagging - Day 14
Geotagging - Day 14

Photos on the Canon: 139 
Photos on the Sony: 2
Photos on the Blackberry: 1
Photos on the Video: 2
Videos on the Video: 8
Steps walked: 6999
Pounds Spent: 29.58

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