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    November 30. Susan, Christine and I saw two of three new Italian plays at the Cherry Lane theatre. I actually thought I had booked the third offer which was a Pirandello revival but we were all glad that we did not miss “The Journey I Never made” and “Story of Love and Soccer”. Both excellently translated and powerfully acted. The first is a thought provoking and somewhat unsettling portrayal of the current social turmoil and the second is modern thriller about corrupt sport and the triumph of evil over good. We were able to chat with one of the actors about the plays after the show. Before the show we ate lobster and oysters at the  “Fish” restaurant which was only two blocks from the theatre!

     

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London in May

My annual trip to London, this year, was overshadowed to some extent by the deaths of Tom (Kim’s husband) and ‘Penny’ (Dennis’s wife and my cousin). However, Gillian, as usual, did her magic and gathered some of the family together for a 96th birthday lunch. Gillian and I appeared together in one of the photographs which was tagged on Facebook and attracted a great many tributes from well-wishers all over. I would like to extend my heart-felt thanks to all you good people!

In between family meetings, I took Christine  on a leisurely tour of my old haunts in the Fleet Street area–The wedding-cake church, the Temple Inn and The Temple Church where the Knights Templar are buried, before taking her to the Tower of  London to see the crown jewels and the head-chopping block.

My cousin Tony and His wife Jo very generously  invited us to stay overnight at their house in Folkston on the south coast so that Christine could see the White Cliffs of Dover and Canterbury cathedral. They also drove me on a nostalgic trip to Ramsgate where my parents took me for seaside holidays. Memories of sticks of sugary rock with the name of the resort running throughout its length, eight-year-olds with tin buckets and spades, sand castles, cockles and jellied eels! But this part of the trip warrants a post of its own and I will put it up after this one.

Click on the photos for detail:

On our second day, Kim and her friend Sue came to eat with us at the President Hotel which we were using for the first time. We all fancied the ‘Carvery’ (Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding). It was not like my mother used to make!

 

. . . the next day we took the Thames ferry to Greenwich where Christine adjusted her watch and we sampled pie and mash and jellied eels and liquor at the last authentic pie shop left in London . . .

 

. . . while we were there, Christine dressed up in period clothes and managed a good likeness to Queen Elizabeth . . .

 

. . . on the following days, we met up with Alan and ate lunch  really fresh fish at a favourite restaurant. Alan is an old friend of Ethel and me–we met many years ago on a trip up the Norwegian coast . . . .

 

This is Christine in the crypt of St. Martins-in-the-field where we ate sometimes . . .

 

. . . however. This is our most favourite eating place–an Italian cookery in Russell Square. We all prefer breakfast here rather than the hotels’
poor offerings–The coffee is also first-rate! . . . .

 

. . . it is also a place for quiet contemplation and Happenings! . . . .

 

. . . . for instance, Pagans have their rallies here . . .

 

. . . this dedicated Pagan told me a great deal about the different chapters of Paganry–They are legion. Not just the obvious Stonehenge groups, but some very obscure ancient followers . . .

 

. . . . . .

 

. . . . .

. . . . .

 

. . . .

 

. . . . Ian and Pam also gave us a celebratory toast in the square . . . . .

 

In The Temple Church, I took a few pictures of the 12th century Templars . . .

 

. . . .

. . .

 

Finally, Kim and Sue gave me a private celebration in our hotel room. We toasted with a Malbec much-admired by Kim’s late husband, Tom.

In addition to the material shown  above, pictures were taken of my birthday lunch and I will have to retrieve them from e-mails and Facebook posts later. Also, Christine and I spent a very interesting visit to the Royal Mews and, on Christine’s little camera,  there are some shots of the impossibly lavish carriages which have been (some still are) used on Royal occasions. I will put these on a later post.

END OF POST

 

 

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One Response

  1. looking forward to the other pictures.

    Nereida

    On Fri, May 19, 2017 at 5:57 PM, Thompson’s Travels wrote:

    > Ben Thompson posted: “My annual trip to London, this year, was > overshadowed to some extent by the deaths of Tom (Kim’s husband) > and ‘Penny’ (Dennis’s wife and my cousin). However, Gillian, as usual, did > her magic and gathered some of the family together for a 96th birthday lun” >

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