London to Venice, April 11 2007
4:15 am Thursday morning J and B are up and mobilized. We've packed, we've planned breakfast, we've pre-bought Gatwick express tickets online, we've got our passports, we're wearing clean underwear.... We're ON TOP OF IT. 4:25 am we're at Baker Street Station. The gates are open. We tap in (new development, they've pretty much done away with paper tickets) we march down the escalators and through the completely empty station. We make jokes about that, and about joining the 200 feet under club. We stand on the Bakerloo platform and we wait. And we wait a little more. Then we start to wander a bit. Then one of us reads the station time chart and we see that the first train is at 5:35. ##&%$@
Didn't we check on that? #$%^#@, well, let's just leave this part out of our stories about this vacation. Ok.
4:35 am we're up out of the Baker Station. We're lucky the turnstyles let us back out again, usually they don't let you come in and out of the same station and we would have had to jump them and pay penalties. Now we're on the corner of Baker and Marylebone looking for a bus to Victoria. This isn't the stop... neither is that one... Here it is! We're waiting. This will take longer, but it will be ok. We're waiting. We read the station paperwork. The bus won't come until 5:30. ^%&@##$
Now we're looking for a taxi. There's one! Damn, it's got someone in it. There's o...! Full, too. There's an empty one. We throw ourselves, arms waving, into traffic. Our taxi driver is a maniac. Not apparently the worst J has ever had, he tells me, but still scary. We scream through night time London, cornering with G force, but ultimately arriving in on piece.
Venice can make anything ok.