Monday, September 28, 2009

the smallest one was Madeline....

"In an old house in Paris (London) that was covered with vines, lived twelve little girls in two straight lines. They left the house, at half past nine...the smallest one was Madeline."

"And that's all there is - there isn't any more."

Friday, September 25, 2009

A Salute to British Veterans

Over the centuries The Royal Hospital Chelsea - not far from where I live- has served as a retirement community for thousands of retired soldiers, this year even allowing a few women to join. In-Pensioners gather for meals, worship, and most of all companionship in their recognizable RED jackets looking very dapper if I must say so myself! Our guide for the tour was a charming chap. He captivated us with his entertaining stories and honestly, at one point I was crying from laughter. I'll tell you about the "multiplying scooters and their reckless drivers" one day.

And, as usual, we end our exhausting tour at a nearby pub....lunch anyone?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Goodwood Revival

The Goodwood Revival is a celebration of motor racing in it's glory days. Set in the 1940's, 50's and 60', everyone gets into the swing of it and comes dressed wearing period clothes. The racing itself kept the guys entertained but for me, the people watching was fantastic.

As soon as we arrived we were swept back to Britain's first post-War motor race. We watched exotic racing cars driven to the extremes around the track from our grandstand seats and wondered through the parking lot of incredibly preserved classic cars. We rummaged through the vintage clothing booths and shared a few Pimms while snapping pictures of all the creative costumes. See for yourself!

It was truly a magical step back in time!

Sunday, September 20, 2009


I have been practicing my high school Spanish and rolling my rrrr's in anticipation for our AWC trip to Barcelona. What FABULOUS city!

Barcelona is best known for the scores of buildings in the Eixample, left by the artistic explosion of modernism in the 1900's. Casa Mila and Sagrada Familia are Gaudi's greatest contributions. He is recognized for intricate ironwork, mosaics of ceramic tiles, symbols inspired by nature, and chimneys with a threatening appearance - like Star Wars.
This Passion Facade of
sculpted figures are angular and almost sinister....and built after his death, in fact the cathedral is still under construction.

Architecture may be the main focus in Barcelona but as a Catalan speaking country, it is theatrical as well! We enjoyed our meals..tapas, seafood paella, and Cava sangria. We enjoyed our entertainment...flamingo dancing, magic fountains night show (built during the 1929 International Fair), and shopping down the La Rambla. All of us brought home beautiful scarves in anticipation of our chilly winter in London and great memories of Barcelona Spain!

Monday, September 14, 2009


On the road again, well I should say,"lane again" because once we got outside the city, "Tomas-Tomas" guided us along narrow lanes avoiding horseback riders and bicyclist through the country side of Kent to our destination...Hever Castle and gardens.

I wish I could send you a scratch-n-sniff picture of this rose garden, the sweet aroma of roses was heavenly. I just had to take a few minutes and take it all in. It makes me want to go out and buy rose scented soaps and bubble bath like Grandma used to use.

Notice how the ivy growing on the castle has begun to turn orange and red - Fall is here!

For lunch we stopped at a roadside Pub called The Little Brown Jug. It was such a beautiful day we ate outside in the garden. Rick had a burger and chips and I had the omelet, made with fresh local eggs from the farm across the street - well, the train station was across the street but that is what the menu board said! After several hungry mouthfuls of the deliciously fresh salad I noticed I got a little more than what I paid for...a bright green inch worm crawled out of my least it wasn't HALF an inch worm!!!

Always looking for the positive:)!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Penhurst Place and Gardens

As one of England's oldest family homes, Penhurst Place has passed through the hands of royalty and nobles for more than six centuries. It now belongs to the Sidney family, still represented by the symbol of the porcupine. (Oh, is that what that is?) The magnificent Baron's Hall, completed in 1341 is used today in many films because it is such an authentic representation of the times. Our guide was fantastic and easy to understand because she grew up in Philly - she was full of interesting facts...."after a grand meal in the Baron's Hall, the ladies would withdraw to the withDRAWING ROOM" and "the cooks would work in the kitchens nude because of the immense heat." (More than I wanted to know)

Eleven acres of hedged English gardens surround the home with thousands of roses, lavender, and ready to harvest apple and pear trees.

We enjoyed lunch in Royal Tunbridge Wells. In Georgian times this popular spa town with it's cool, iron rich water gained a reputation as the place to see and be seen among royalty and fashionable members of aristocracy.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Back in the Hood!

Meet friends for Mah Jongg at AWC - check!
Laundry dropped off - check!
Grocery delivery from Ocado - check!
Smile at neighbors - check!
Hook up Sling Box for SEC Football - check!

Wishing all our friends and family an enjoyable Labor Day Weekend whether you are moving furniture, cooking out on Duxbury Beach, dropping off your freshman, attending the first Auburn game of the season or just gathering with friends to watch....CHEERS!