Those younger, less loaded down and more energetic than we, would have traveled from London to Southampton by train. When we cruise, we bring an extra suitcase which we have barely opened thus far. A four block walk to the Tube station, many stairs and escalators to the subway train, reverse the process at the rail station, and getting to our hotel here - a real ordeal, especially when it is still rainy. Instead a wonderful man showed up at our door, picked us up with our bags, and brought us directly to the Southampton hotel. All you need is money. It's not a cheap trip. The two cities are about 90 miles apart and we spent the first hour of the drive just trying to get out of metropolitan London. The drive on the motor way was quick and easy, but as we learned from our drive in, you can't take that for granted. We will board the cruise ship tomorrow and have no particular interest in Southampton, which does not appear to be a tourist town, but our travel philosophy as retirees with lots of time is to allow extra time just in case. Better not to need it than to have regrets.
If we had a car, we might have gone to the Titanic Museum. The Titanic pulled away from White Star Dock in Southampton. Five days later she sank with great loss of life after striking an iceberg. The disaster made headlines across the world and had a devastating effect on the people of Southampton. Most of the crew lived in the town and over 500 households lost at least one family member. These days locals still call it their 9/11. Our driver said he lost a distant relative who worked onboard. After the disaster some neighborhoods were destroyed since all the heads of household who had lived there had been lost.
Not a good thing to be thinking about the day before we set sail.