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Wallabies vs Wales

World Cup Victory!

all seasons in one day
View London to Cardiff on StephenJen's travel map.

On Friday 14th September, I did something that I never thought I would do in a million years. I picked up a brand new hire car from Waterloo (Central London) and drove it back to our good old flat in the Western Suburbs of London.

Well, after not having driven in nine months - I think I did pretty well - particularly in a big city in the middle of the day. Though the car was equipped with Sat Nav and was telling me where to turn - I still managed to miss my turn a few times and ended up driving past Buckingham Palace, Royal Albert Hall, Big Ben/Houses of Parliament and a few other sights. Quite an enjoyable drive (however what takes around 20 minutes by train took over an hour driving thanks to missed turns and London Traffic!). Anyway, already running late - Stephen and I packed our little blue hire Vauxhall (Holden) Astra with our Australian Scarves and clothes and drove in the direction of Cardiff, Wales.

Along the way - we stopped to take a look at Stonehenge and managed to see it in various lights thanks to the quickly setting sun. Stonehenge was quite amazing, it is wierd to see something in person that you have seen so may times in print or on film - the same feeling I got when I saw the Mona Lisa (but this was as big as I thought it would be - unlike the Mona Lisa). Stonehenge is really quite cool, and I can recommend the free audio guide that you can utilise when visiting as it is really fascinating to hear different theories about the purpose or history of such a bizarre structure (and though they did not mention it - I am sure that the Scientologists may also have a theory about Stonhenge that relates somehow to their master plan).



As it was getting dark, we drove through Salisbury (singing Peter Gabriels song Solsbury Hill. We since realised that this is not where he was singing about - hence the different spelling) then, Bath and Bristol. Adam and Meaghan were driving towards Cardiff in their own little Silver Citroen at the same time, though they managed to cover few more km's than us and managed to get run off the road by other drivers! It was getting late, we were tired and had nowhere to sleep. We found a cool little coach-inn called The Three Salmon which had a room for us, and there we stayed for the night (and the complimentary brekfast) until it was again time to hit the road.


We arrived in Cardiff at around mid-morning and after driving down a closed street and being "cautioned" by the police, managed to find a car park quite close to Millenium Stadium where we would be in a few hours time. We saw the Wallabies leaving their hotel as we were coming into town, and started to get excited about the prospect of watching them beat Wales in the Rugby surrounded by other Aussies who had travelled from various places to see it. Cardiff was FULL of Aussies. There is nothing quite like being surrounded by so much green and gold miles from home and all there to cheer on fellow Aussies at a huge stadium. We donned green and gold, Aussie & Boxing Kangaroo Flags and even some face paint before heading to the stadium.




What can I say about the Game? There was so much green and gold, so many people, so much good singing (okay... that was the Welsh, not us.....) and it was a very cool game to see. During the half time break - it was interesting to note that the sound system belted out "Delilah" by Tom Jones to lift the Welsh Spirits and what did we get?...... AC/DC "Long Way to The Top. Noice.


Australia beat Wales by a decent margin however there were some real edge of the seat moments, and the Welsh played with some fierce determination. It was a great feeling to see the Wallabies doing a lap of victory and wave to all of the Aussies that had come out to see them win. This was AWESOME and it was great to have been part of it.



So, the game was over and we came to the very quick realisation that none of us (Adam & Megs or Stephen and I) had anywhere to sleep. We called around hotels/motels/campsites/hostels, drove to Bath, called around again - with no luck). We ended up out in the sticks eating fish and chips and eventually found a cheap hotel that furnish us with two rooms. Nice.

The next morning we headed back to Bath for breakfast and to have a look around. Bath is a very pretty city with a lot to look at, however we stayed only a few hours after Adam and Meaghan said goodbye (again.... which was hard) and headed off again to continue their adventure. Stephen and I looked at the Roman Baths, purchased some tasty-but-expensive toffee and headed back towards London. It took us under 1.5 Hours to drive in total from Cardiff to London (excluding stops) which we were amazed at! What a trip.





NB: I did return the car to the Europcar Office on a Monday morning before work - driving in Central London in Peak Hour - without a scratch, dent or a missed turn! Not a bad effort!?

Jen xxx

Posted by StephenJen 06:05 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged events

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Great entry guys. The photos are awesome.

by adamandmeg

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