Yosemite Hike - 2011

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

We came, We saw, We Wembley'ed!

Today was our last day in London. So....laundry, cleaning the house and eating all the food in the fridge was on the docket. Then, Wembley Stadium for Women's Soccer Semi Finals, which when we got the tickets a year ago, we hoped USA would be in the semi's. The US Women are in, but unfortunately NOT the match we had tickets for. Oh well, we tried!

Today Jana woke feeling sad it was time to leave our house in Kingston. We've seen much of what London has to offer and attended Olympic events, but that hasn't left much time to explore our darling neighborhood on the Thames and surrounding burroughs.

Just this morning on the bus we met a lovely family from "our neighborhood" telling us of a park with sweeping views of The Thames within minutes of our house. Apparently the view has not changed in 200 years as they have. It permitted any building to obstruct or change it.

We got our chores done and tried to restore the house to order for The Gormans return. Ironically, they are in San Diego now and will move to Dana Pt. so we hope to see them when we're stateside. We decided to make a thank you gift for them so off to paint some pottery 2 blocks away.

Bus to Richmond, train to Waterloo, transfer to Jubilee Line for Wembley Stadium. These pics are for you Mike Brooks!!! We wish you were there with us. We couldn't have hoped for better seats. 50 yard line seats, but not sure what they are called in soccer (football)? The stadium BIG, holds 80,000 and is so clean with comfortable seats. They sell alcohol at concession stands but you are not allowed to take it in the stadium. Hmmmm, maybe that's how it stays so clean!

There were two venues that Scott really wanted to experience and both began with W. Wimbeldon for tennis and Wembley for football. Wembley is where England plays all their big international matches and many of the European league championship games. Quite the que with 80,000 people getting in and out at the same time.

The match up was Japan, No. 1 in the world, vs. France. It was an exciting game with Japan winning 2-1, that included France missing a penalty kick to tie it late, advancing to the gold medal match. Getting out fairly quickly versus the 2 hour expected exit from the soccer stadium, we had one last place to see, the P&G USA Athlete & Family House. We knew it was going to be good when we saw that swimmers Dana Vollmer and Rebecca Soni had signed in. Breaststroker Eric Shanteau walked by as we were getting credentials. World record holder 200 breaststroke Rebecca Soni.

Now we are watching USA vs. Canada women's soccer at the P&G Athlete & Family House and it's just gone into overtime. Great thing we are here with other US Olympic athletes getting the NBC feed to watch what Shelby really wanted to see, USA soccer. If we were at the house the BBC wouldn't have shown soccer. The winner will advance to play Japan for gold! GO USA!!!

An awesome game as Canada kept scoring, 3 goals total, and each time the US would respond, including the tying goal late in second half. Women's soccer seems more exciting than the men's game, as there are a lot more runs at the goal. Finally, in the second overtime in extended injury time, literally 30 seconds left before penalty kicks, US scores a goal to win and the whole house goes crazy chanting USA.

A great last night and what a way to finish with a gold medal weight lift by Shelby.

We were worried that London, the focus of our trip the last four years, could not live up to the amazing time in Switzerland. Needless to say, the last night just capped a great adventure of sites in London along with some amazing Olympic events. Another gold medal Olympics for the Fortune Four and now off to the third part of our trip, Paris!

Shelby: Seeing the soccer semi finals at Wembley & watching USA on t.v.
Sydney: Seeing all the athletes at P&G House
Jana: Walking and talking as a family
Scott: Witnessing an exciting semi final soccer match in Wembley Stadium and an awesome USA soccer game.

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