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Meet the Columnist

Columnist, Sheila Moss, is humor writer from  Tennessee. She writes  a weekly human interest column about daily life and the funny things that happen to everyone.

   She has written for  the Daily News of Kingsport,   Griffin Journal, Oakridge Now, Atlanta Woman Magazine, Aberdeen Examiner, Angleton Advocate,  and Smyrna AM, a supplement of the Murfreesboro Daily News Journal. She has been published by Voyageur Press, McGraw Hill, and the good folks at Guidepost Books.  Her articles have appeared in numerous anthologies and other publications, both in print and online.

    She is a former board member and past  Editor of  the Columnists.com, website of  the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, the oldest and largest professional organization for columnists. She is the Web Editor of Southern
Humorists.com
  and  a founder of the Southern Humorists writers' organization. She is writer, editor, and webmaster of HumorColumnist.com

    To carry her weekly column in your newspaper, or to republish an article, please contact her. It's that easy. 

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London's Last Fling...
 


London's Last Fling


The entire time that I was in London, I was never able to figure out British money.  I donít know why they donít just use Euroís like the rest of civilized Europe -- not that I could figure that out either.

The dollars there are coins that look like a nickel, quarters are dimes, dimes are nickels, copper quarters are two cents and Susan B. Anthony dollars are fifty cents.  They also had other strange coins that resembled Chuck E. Cheese slot machine coins.

We spent our last day at the Tower of London, an old fortress from medieval days, with fabulous new additions only a century or two old.   In addition to other attractions, the crown jewels were on display there. Apparently, the royals believe, ďIf youíve got it, flaunt it.Ē  Security was very tight and we were not allowed to take pictures.

The royal guards, also guides, were called ďbeef-eaters,Ē either because they are partially paid in beef or because the word closely resembles a French word that has something to do with serving the queen.  Iím not sure which one is correct, but neither were they.

There were stone towers with spiral stairs to climb in and shining suits of armor on display rendering a fairyland type of atmosphere.  It was one of the most interesting places we visited, which made me sort of glad we had saved it for the last day.

After the Tower, we went to Herrod's Department Store, which like everything else, looked like a church.  The inside was very unusual, with Egyptian statues and elaborate ceilings and light fixtures.  They had a wide assortment of food rooms and goods from all over the world, but we decided to buy our souvenirs some place cheaper.

We did touristy things like making pictures of each other in the red phone booths that are all over the place, and shooting pictures of double-decker buses from the window of a pub. We wandered Piccadilly Circus, stumbled on China Town, and ended the day with a theater production of Mary Poppins, which seemed appropriately British.

The next morning we had to leave early for the airport.  There was the aggravation of waiting in a line of fifty people at the Underground with only one person selling tickets, and then having that person leave to help someone who lost change in a machine while the entire line waited. We were sorry later that we didnít think to give the guy a pound and tell him to get lost.

We had to change trains twice on the way to the airport because the driver left and the new driver wasnít there, or some such nonsense. We still donít know what happened, but apparently if someone is late for work, the train just waits till they get there. Boarding the plane, we found that they had sold six tickets for four seats.  Fortunately, the plane was not full, so we did not have to ride on the wing or demand free tickets.

All in all, the trip was successful. We remembered to look right instead of left and left instead of right, although there was the one close call with a crazed bicycler.  The hotel didnít burn down from plugging everything into one plug, and we resolved the currency problem by just using a charge card.

Traveling during the day was definitely much better than the trip over when we traveled at night and pretended to sleep. But the inconvenience of travel brought us back to reality in a hurry.  There was a good feeling when the plane landed back in American territory.

And now Iím an experienced world-wide, traveler, my eyes are sore from looking and my feet still ache.  I can report that there is definitely life out there.  But it sure is great to be back where the big hair is on the ladies instead of the big-wig guys in museums.


Copyright 2005 Sheila Moss

 
 



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