Friday, August 31, 2012

Friday, August 31st, London


No, you didn't miss a day.  We did.  Our traveling is a dance between the more exciting parts of the real world, and some pretty exciting parts of the virtual world.  We try to create a blend here, so you can experience the performance.  But sometimes we just have to have a break.   Yesterday was one of those days.

Today, Friday, we got back out there.  Big Ben, Parliament, Westminster Abbey and Cathedral, and Churchill's War Rooms.  We were going to include Buckingham Palace, but ran out of steam.

The only place they allowed cameras was Churchill's War Rooms, and it was dark enough to slow the camera speed.  And to top it off, I didn't check the lens, and there's a big fingerprint on the lower left of the shots.  Other than that....

We're still having fun.  Pat's knee is acting up, and I seem to be running out of breath more often.  But we've come home each day pretty overwhelmed by what we've seen.  It's so much history, and for me it's very personal.  It's like my very own time warp, where a family soap opera is playing out.

Westminster was the epitome of it.  I stood in a church, owing most of its design and existence to the last of my ancestors to be King, Henry III, in which one son was the first of the royal family to be married (Edmund and Aveline), and another the first to be buried (Edward).   All of them are buried there, amidst 39 other monarchs of England and Scotland.

Lots of other noted writers, poets, and politicians are buried there.  There's a whole corner occupied by Chaucer, Noel Coward, Irving, Wordsworth, Browning, Dickens, Kipling, Olivier, and Tennyson. Many others had memorials placed there.

In some dark and cramped rooms underneath a building near Westminster are maps and desks, and phones which organized the English war effort in WWII.  It's strange to be looking at the same pin pricks which identified battles and armies and wins/losses.  Stranger still is to see beds and chairs and tables in which key members of the government slept and sat and plotted such a critical conflict for the earth.  Pat recently finished a good book on Churchill she picked up at his birthplace in Blenheim Castle, and I'm carrying it home to add to my "hope I find time to read this" library.

Here's a link to the few photos (and fuzzy thumbprints) taken today: Friday, August 31st, London.

And if you aren't as bored as Pat is with how my family history relates to this entire trip, click on over to the Fearon Family History Blog's latest post.

Tomorrow, it's supposed to be a sunny day here, and we're going to the Kew Gardens.  Stay tuned for flowers!


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