Friday, 19 June 2015

Lemonade by the river

One of the things we said we'd do, come retirement, was get on a bus and see where it went to.  So today we decided to do just this.  We had planned to get a 37 to Putney and then a 337 on to Richmond, but just missed a 37, and the next bus due was a 35.  So we caught that and then waited for a 337 at Clapham Junction.  This had the big advantage that we were the first people on, so we could sit in the front upstairs.

It took about an hour to get to Richmond, the bus going via Wandsworth (I see the old Arndale Centre is now rather poshly called Southside!), Putney, Mortlake, East Sheen and finally turned off the South Circular to arrive in Richmond. We got out at the bus station, which was only about five minutes' walk to the river.  As suggested on the maps, we walked to the middle of the bridge to look at the view:

We were then both thirsty and uncomfortable, so we went down to a café on the bank beside the bridge, which sold us some incredibly delicious lemonade that was minty but not too sweet. 
And, when we had drunk it and made ourselves comfortable, we walked back up through Richmond to the station.  The old Dickens and Jones is now a House of Fraser - I was glad to see it is still a department store.  I remembered that there had been a wonderful children's bookshop in Richmond, but I have no idea where it was - I've just looked it up and found that although it closed some years ago, the owners have opened a new one, but we didn't see it.

We didn't have much time, as the Swan Whisperer wanted to be back in time for figure club, so we caught a train straight back.  We were lucky in that it was a semi-fast train, and didn't stop at places like East Sheen, Mortlake, Barnes or Wandsworth Town, but only at Putney and then Clapham Junction.  It came in on Platform 4, and there was an Overground sitting on platform 2, so the Swan Whisperer and I decided to race each other home - he went on the Overground to Clapham High Street and then walked, and I took a 35.  I am mortified to have to confess that he got there first, but only just - no windows were open when the bus went past the flats, but by the time I had got out and crossed the road, he had opened a few!  So it was judged too close to call!

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