The Royal Hatchling Has Flown The Coop

Ace Yank on the Ground Peg-o-Leg reporting live from ground zero, otherwise known as my hotel room, one block from St. Mary’s Hospital.  The Royal Eagles and hatchling have flown the coop.  Repeat…the Royal Eagle has flown the coop.

Although, the eagle is more of an American symbol, isn’t it?  What’s a British bird? Is a cassowary a bird? Is that how you spell it?  Do you have any here in London, cuz I think I saw one on the tube this afternoon (the “tube” is English for “small, tin rocket filled to overflowing with thousands of smelly, sweaty other people, all in a big, honkin’ hurry to get where they’re going and they don’t care how many clueless American tourists they trample in their haste to get there.”) Can’t think of any other birds in all the excitement around here.

The thing is, His Tiny Majesty Pip, who poops rubys (thank you Speaker…you are my idol), just left the hospital with Billy and Kay Kay. And I caught it all on film.  Well, not really me, exactly. 

After getting into London and taking the 10 minute walk from the station to the hotel (HAHAHAHAHA!  No, really.  Apparently everywhere you stay, anywhere in Brittania, is a short, 10 minute hike from whatever form of transportation you used to get here.  At least that’s what I’ve heard on all 3 of

our stops, and it hasn’t been true yet.  But I digress…) we found the place and got checked in.  My dismay at the open front windows in the lobby, evidence of yet another a/c-free zone, was tempered by the sight of an honest to goodness lift. (that’s what us UKelelies call the elevator.)  Did I mention that our place in Brighton was on the 4th floor?  With no a/c?  With no lift? (remember that means an elevator which, as it turns out, is a very handy piece of machinery to have about.) With stairs that started out 2 feet wide and got progressively narrower as we climbed higher, because in Englandia, only very small people are allowed about the 3rd floor, except when they’re fat, grumpy tourists?  But I digress…

Our genial host, Akeel, showed us to our room.  I was happy it was on the first floor.  That was the end of all happiness, though, apparently for the rest of this fabulously expensive vacation.   On the plus side, it had its own bathroom, for which I had paid dearly.  On the minus side, was everything else.

Three twin beds were shoe-horned into a closet.  There was no window.  Let me repeat that.  There. was. NO. window.  There was a skylight open approx 4″, which would have to be closed when it started pouring again like it did yesterday. (as Joe Hoover mentioned, London has imported the Monsoon season along with all the inhabitants of such countries.)  It was so, so hot in our squalid, wallpaper-peeling, windowless prison cell that after Akeel gently closed the doors, I just stood in the middle of the room (the 1×1 foot path open between the bed and the bathroom) and cried.  My

daughters, more resilient than I, flopped onto their cots and  tried to make contact with the elusive interwebz.

Tears mixed with buckets of sweat and rolled down my face, then down my back, through my bra, the back of my knees, and drenched my Easy Spirit Fun-timer sandals in a miasma of hot, monkey misery. Sorry if that’s TMI, but I’m trying to set the stage at how low I had fallen.  Figuring I had nothing to lose, I marched back out to the lobby and said, with a sweet smile, “Akeel, do you have anything with a window? It has to be hotter than the sun in there!”  I think the pitifulness of my sweat-soaked self, or else the fear of the monster lawsuit I would unleash if I got heatstroke in this hotel, touched Akeel.  He took us up one floor to Nirvana.

Seriously. 10 foot ceilings with plaster leaves and fruit moldings.  9 foot windows that open, blessedly, high enough to step out onto a tiny balcony, a little sitting area and a modern, clean bathroom.  I just lost it then, sobbing on Akeel’s shoulder in grattitude.  I think when I fell to the floor and clung to his foot as he tried to leave the room it unnerved him a little  – he mumbled something about shameless foreign hussies who dare to touch a strange man.

image

The Royals..or some cassowaries

Anyway, I went for a hike to get to know my way around and got totally cheesy from the heat, the exertion and the Tube.  As I was coming out of Paddington Station, people were gathering along the street in the expectation that Sir Poops-a-Lot was going to be going home that way.  I hung around with my camera like the rest of the pathetic rabble, but the thought of the shower awaiting me at the hotel was too much to resist.  I abandoned my post, I’m ashamed to say.

But fear not.  It seems my sophisticated 23-year-old daughter, Liz, has caught the royal-watching bug.  She left her lunch and a full pitcher of Pimms with me and other-daughter Gwen, in order to hang around the hospital down the block most of the afternoon. She snared pics of the royal grandparents coming in and out.  Then she dashed back to get Billy and Kay-Kay an hour ago.  The results may be grainy…ok, so you can’t tell if it’s actually a picture of Kate and William or a couple of cassowaries, but these pics are real a Three twin beds were shoe-horned into a closet. nd hot off the presses.  Don’t say we don’t work hard for you here in London. 
image

And now, cub reporter Liz is demanding delayed payment so we’re heading out for more Pimms.  Pip,pip and cheerio!

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About pegoleg

R-A-M-B-L-I-N-G-S, Ram...Blin!
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76 Responses to The Royal Hatchling Has Flown The Coop

  1. pfstare says:

    🙂 at UKelelies……
    Not staying at The Dorchester then Peg? THe joy of London hotels….

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  2. Wait, wait! Who is that man with the elbow? Is he a royal? OMG, a shot of a royal elbow!!!

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  3. Mary K. says:

    Good job dragging us into the UK madness. Can’t wait to hear all the gritty details-enjoy your windows!

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    • pegoleg says:

      Oh, I DO enjoy these windows. Everybody going down the street is probably getting an eyeful of us, but I’m not closing the drapes and killing the breeze, no way. T minus less than 2 weeks until the wedding – hang in there, momma!

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  4. See? It pays to be a sweaty, pushy American. You get the best room in the house! Positive reinforcement for our brutishness.

    What the deuce is the kid named? For the love of Pete! (And Charles, and George and Francis and…)

    Pip pip, I say!

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    • pegoleg says:

      Renee, I just read your oh-so moving post. This stupid, damn tablet computer and foreign internet combo means I can’t log in to comment anywhere but on my own blog. Just wanted to say how moving your story is. I didn’t know you’d been struggling so much – you are such a gifted writer. All your writing, serious or funny, is quality. I think I admire your poetry most of all, because that’s something I just cannot do. Beyond the “There once was a lady from Liger…” variety. So glad this new therapy is helping. I’ll write more when I’m back in the internet saddle, but know that YOU are an inspiration to me.

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  5. I am SO glad you spoke up and got a great room – with a balcony, and 9′ windows? Are you kidding me? That’s the England you want to experience – understand that.
    What’s most cool about all of this, Peg, is that you and your girls are right there, watching history take place! You couldn’t have planned it this good – look at the TV networks and media, who have been camped out in England for 2 weeks! You nailed it with the comment about interviewing each other and the birds because nothing was happening!
    So fun. I am SO jealous and giggling like a goof-ball reading your excellent reports from UKeleilie.
    Excellent job, ace reporter! Enjoy your vacation, take lots of pictures!
    Miss you here on the other side of the pond 🙂

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    • I’d like a re-do on this post. I never edit enough!

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      • pegoleg says:

        Your comment was fine. I know what you mean about the edit, though. I’m having a devil of a time with this damn tablet computer. Can’t figure out how to edit some mistakes and bad spacing, and I tried 4 times to get that 3rd picture of Prince Charless and Camilla (liz’s best shot)in here. No can do…grrr.

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    • pegoleg says:

      I don’t want to give the wrong impression – it’s still half the size of the typical Holiday Inn. But it’s such a relief after the first room I’m beginning to wonder if they keep the dungeon room just to frighten potentially arrogant guests into being humble and grateful for anything they end up with. Hmmm.

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  6. lisaspiral says:

    Ravens, tower of London, Hail Britannia and all that rot. Glad you escaped from the closet.

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    • pegoleg says:

      Me too. I’m ever so grateful, ducks! (that’s what we say in Merry old England when we’re being friendly and playful. I don’t really think you’re a duck.)

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  7. Pingback: Royal Baby Namefest Live Blog | Blurt

  8. If I ever need a Peg-on-the-Street, you’re the Peg I’d call.
    Yesterday our local radio station called a random bar near the hospital to ask for an update. (!) Clearly they should have called you. 🙂

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    • pegoleg says:

      Hey, Jackie, we were AT a random bar across the street from the hospital this afternoon. Wonder if it was the same place? If you’re in the neighborhood, I recommend their Ploughman’s Platter. With a pitcher of Pimms, of course.

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  9. “Tears mixed with buckets of sweat and rolled down my face, then down my back, through my bra, the back of my knees, and drenched my Easy Spirit Fun-timer sandals in a miasma of hot, monkey misery.”
    Mastery! I could picture you in that hot, monkey misery. Hope things are better now!

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    • Jennifer says:

      Oh I so get that feeling. How to feel disgusting and horrible. Thanks for that picture 🙂

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    • pegoleg says:

      Much better! We went out for dinner at 9 when it had cooled down and had a lovely time splitting steak pie and mashed potatoes along with curry and rice at a pub. We sat on the second floor veranda overlooking the now-dark boundary of Hyde Park. Just got back, full and clean and ready for bed. Night-y-o, Miss Guitar!

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  10. I’m loving your on-the-spot reporting here, I’m sorry our country provided you with a lousy room to start with, but thank goodness you were upgraded! London hotels are SO variable, even within the same hotel as you discovered! Your royal reporting is so much more entertaining than the actual reporting. Although you have failed to mention the big question that is on everyone’s lips – how quickly will Kate get her figure back?

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    • pegoleg says:

      I predict she will be size zero again in 2 weeks. And you Britlandians have been more than kind and generous! Except that guy at the ticket window for the Tube. And that guy at the information window for the bus. And that lady sweeping up at the train depot. Hmmm…are we spotting a pattern with those in the transportation industry?

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  11. bigsheepcommunications says:

    Sooo, this is a vacation?

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  12. Elyse says:

    Squeaky wheel theory works well in the Old Country, too. Good for you.

    I love London. It was never hot when I’ve been there, though.

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  13. Becky says:

    Glad you got all brassed off and insisted an better accomodations. We are having great fun following your adventurous travels abroad! Hope the remainder of trip is jolly good.

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    • pegoleg says:

      It’s 1:30 in the morning and I’m goofing around with this nonsense instead of planning tomorrow’s itinerary. Not a moment to waste when there’s so much to see!

      Like

  14. notquiteold says:

    Some room-temperature beer should cheer you right up.

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  15. Daile says:

    Cassowaries are more of an Aussie thing I’m pretty sure. They are fierce looking emu birds with a giant spade hat thing. They did an episode of Inside Natures Giants on them where they cut one open.

    Sorry, I got distracted, royal whatsit?

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      You know that knowing that much more about cassowaries than about the royal bambino makes you an uber-nerd, right? Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

      Like

  16. joehoover says:

    It’s shocking the prices they charge I was chatting to people last week who were staying in a basic chain hotel and it still cost over £100 a night. I always rent apartments when venturing to other cities now, then I can relive the joys of doing the same things I do back home like take out the trash, make my own bed and trudge around the supermarket.

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    • pegoleg says:

      I agree – that sounds like the best route. I tried to do that, but they managing co. revealed a lot of hidden fees AFTER I booked and tried to cheat me out of my deposit. Now Im a bit soured on the whole thing,

      Like

  17. I’ve always dreamed of going to London, but now I’m not so sure. I like my windows. And not being a hot monkey.

    Oh, Pegnacious, I find if perfect and hilarious that you just happen to be there while the Royal He Who Shall Not Be Named arrives. They did this all for you, didn’t they?

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    • I agree, Darladoodlydoo, it cracks me up that Peg’s first visit to England coincides with the arrival of His Royal Pip-ness AND she was right there. The Royal family fascinates me, so me thinks this is pretty cool.
      You must be ‘bloody naked’ after all the Royal watching and sightseeing (naked means tired, something I learned from my British neighbor while living in Japan). Jolly good fun!

      Like

      • As an Englishwoman, I stared at your comment with a puzzled frown on my face for a moment before I figured out you mean “knackered”, not “naked”. 😀 If you go around saying you’re “bloody naked” I think you’d get a few looks from people!

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        • pegoleg says:

          Hahahaha! This is the kind of communication problem that can lead to an international incident, wot? wot?

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          • Indeed! LOL. I love looking at the cross-cultural linguistic divide between the UK and the States. As George Bernard Shaw said, they are “two countries divided by a common language”. Let me know if you hear or read any more linguistics ‘Britishisms’.

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      • pegoleg says:

        What suprised me was how into it Liz was. Gwen and I sat in a pub 1/2 block away and enjoyed the Ploughman’s lunch (w/ Pimms, of course. I’m now reconsidering my life-long aversion to gin, by the way.) Liz forked in one mouthful, gulped a drink and dashed out to stand in the heat with her camera. Who woulda thunk it?

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    • Oh, do come to London. Seriously, Peg-o-Leg is painting an atrocious picture of the city. (Only joking, Peggy. May I call you Peggy or is that too familiar? Anyway, I’m loving these posts) To be honest, I wouldn’t particularly want to be in London in 90 degree heat. I hope the rest of your vacation improves! Are you visiting anywhere else in the UK besides London?

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    • pegoleg says:

      It’s really fabboo, Lady Darlypants-Jones, despite the heat and the bazillion people milling around everywhere and the heat. You’d love it, with or without a monkey like Mr, Skittles, that cheeky buggah.

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  18. So glad you got another room. I guess it wouldn’t occur to guests to ask the desk clerk if the room has a window! Thank you for the royal peek at Baby Pip, until he gets a name. Nothing much to report here except that all eyes here are on where you are!

    Like

  19. Snoring Dog Studio says:

    I am enjoying your travails and tribulations so much! You are so funny. Good for you for asking for another room – my gosh, that they would even rent that hovel out is ridiculous. The equivalent of an Easy Bake Oven at some dear prices I imagine. What a zoo it must be there right now. Have fun – more pics, please!

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      I can’t figure out how to get the pictures to STAY loaded after I inssert them. I absolutely HATE the WordPRess Android app I’m using on this stupid tablet computer – no editing, no preview, can’t get pictures to stick, and I can’t sign in anywhere. That means I can’t comment on anybody else’s blogs. Grrr. But, on a positive note, we’re having a lot of fun!

      Like

  20. lexiemom says:

    I went on my one and only trip to Europe over 10 years ago, and had just the opposite experience than you. Being a southerner, and taking my vacation the last week of June/first week of July, I naturally expected it to be hot. I packed only short sleeves shirts, and mostly shorts, though thankfully I did pack one pair of long pants & a rain coat. I wore the same outfit the whole time in London–that one pair of pants & my rain coat–because it was wet and freezing the entire time! But our hotel was wonderful! The room was tiny, but really super nice; they had just finished upgrading the entire floor: A/C in the room (not that we needed it), glass mosaic tiles in the open modern bathroom, a king bed with giant flat screen mounted on the wall, and all modern decor & amenities.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      It’s Murphy’s First Law of Travel. Whatever garments you pack will be useless luggage weights for the duration of the tour, and you will end up wearing one, to-be-burned-as-soon-as-you-get-home garment the whole time.

      Like

  21. JM Randolph says:

    Your greatest accomplishment is getting a good room without resorting to justified violence. Nice work!

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      I must admit, I think my kids were pretty impressed, which is hard to do when they’re 23 and 21. Old Mom seemed pretty useful to have around…for about 20 minutes.

      Like

  22. In addition to “lift” and “tube” don’t forget that in England a “rubber” is an eraser, a “lorry” is a truck, and a “meat pie” is rotten pig organs sealed in plaster.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      Damn! Wish I’d had this valuable information before I ordered the “Spotted Rubber” at the pub last night. Needed my own pitcher of Pimms to wash it down.

      Like

  23. barbtaub says:

    Ever since I stayed in one of those “it doesn’t get hot enough to need AC” London hotels, I’ve had a hard and fast rule about staying in London in July. I always stay in an American chain-hotel, preferably in another country. (At the moment, I’m in Paris. At a Marriott. With AC.) So I loved your post! So funny.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      American hotel? Pshaw! I want to experience REAL life here. And by real life I mean Disney World’s Epcot Center where they have all the countries that LOOK just like the real places, but are clean and sanitary, with modern plumbing, heating and cooling, and people who speak understandable English.

      Like

      • barbtaub says:

        Well, I experience real life in England every day and mostly I love it. I just love it more at the proper temperatures. We wax nostalgic over little luxuries like thermostats, air-conditioning, ice (!), graham crackers, root beer… Still, last week I was invited to a party at Prince Charles’ estate in the Cotswolds. That certainly never happened in the US. (Blog post to come, but I was so grateful to His Royal Infancy for delaying his arrival until after that party.)

        Like

        • pegoleg says:

          You were invited to Prince Charles humble cottage? What kind of hostess gift do you bring to something like that – a paper bag full of emeralds? I bet my invitation was lost in cyberspace because of this darn tablet computer. Dang!

          I’m waxing snarky because of deep envy, obviously. Was it loads of fun?

          Like

  24. dasbeard2013 says:

    If it makes you feel any better. To be proper British you’ve got to piss and whine about every season, so you’re 25% emigrated.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      I’m boning up on my pissing, moaning and pub jargon for the National Exam I heard we have to take in order to leave the country. Do you know where we find the exam center at Heathrow?

      Like

  25. amelie88 says:

    My supervisor and I at work totally had the live feed at the hospital on playing in the background on our desktops as we worked waiting to see when Wills and Kate would come out with Baby Cambridge (now known as George). I can tell that’s Kate only because of the flash of blue since she was wearing a blue dress!

    And I’m glad you got to switch rooms in the hotel and it was cooler!

    I had no AC in my apartments when I lived in Madrid, Spain either nor did my host mother have any when I was studying in Malaga in southern Spain. That was probably the most difficult for me since it is hot in Malaga about 8 months out of the year (though there is the beach so I guess you can go cool off in the Mediterranean). She had no heat either and I was there for the fall/beginning of winter and temps dropped quite a lot at night. It was pretty cold, despite the wool blankets my host mother piled on my bed and the space heather she lent me. When it got down in the 60s, the Spaniards would start wearing wool sweaters and scarves!

    Like

  26. Al says:

    “Poops rubys?” FOFLOL! Can’t get past that. Will read the rest later. SOFLOL!

    Like

  27. Pleun says:

    I always wondered about the blue fountains, can you snap a picture of that for us, as our own private reporter? Cool stories, keep us posted!!!

    Like

  28. A first hand account! Mind you a hot, sweaty, first hand account. This will be something for your memory books!

    Like

  29. HoaiPhai says:

    The bathrooms in England? “Luxury!” Let me tell you about bathrooms… I was at the Baekdamsa temple in Korea and experienced a pressing physiological requirement and much to my horror the bathrooms were not equipped with “sitters”, they only had “squatters” which I never figured out how to use without falling over or causing a lot of collateral damage. I eventually found a handicapped stall that had familiar “sitter” apparatus.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      Ha! My mother had a similar experience in Japan. We westerners are too big, (generally all the way around) for the squatters.

      Like

      • HoaiPhai says:

        I respectfully disagree about size being a major factor… have you ever seen sumo or Korean ssireum wrestlers? Maybe you’re right and sports heros get special passes to the pedestal-style “porcelain pagoda” but I’ve never seen footage of them in the loo (in Asia they probably spell it “lu”), so it could go either way. I’m talking about anatomical flexibility (white guys in kung fu movies just don’t cut it), and a certain ballistics problem involving center of gravity vs. textile/ankle colinearity.

        I hope I have been sufficiently oblique in my explanation so as to have neither caused your name’s removal from the Queen’s Nanny’s Royal Pantry Reception invitee list nor soured you to the inevitable and heapingly-proportioned spotted dick likley to be served you there. If you require further clarification, perhaps it’s best if I dedicate a post to this problem. The language on my blog can get quite salty as we tend to cater to the opposite end of British society like the Artful Dodger’s descendants, for example.

        Like

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