We’ve had a marvelous week with the my brother and his family [Bob, Susan, Kathie, and Julie]. They arrived Tuesday, and John took the morning off to get them from the airport. We stayed here, letting them unpack and get their feet back under them, until our washer-dryer came. Then we did a quick tour of Reigate and Redhill and walked in Reigate.
They took a double-decker bus for a tour of London Wednesday, met Gerhard for lunch, and poked around the British Museum. [Susan and Bob knew Gerhard at college, too.] Wednesday I drove, and Bob navigated us to Windsor Castle. What an impressive thing it was! I’m so glad to have seen it. We ate pasties from a quick food place while sitting on a low wall surrounding a grassy area in the shadow of the castle. John’s push chair had to be left outside whenever we were in buildings, but we shared the burden of him, and he behaved very well.
Friday I’m not sure what all the tourists did – the company chauffeur took them around in the car, and they saw the changing of the guard, the Tower of London and Westminster Abbey. They got home after John did!
Saturday we saw Petworth House, which Bob had wanted to go in for a display of carving. I was glad to hear him talk about it. [I was impressed by this portrait of Henry VIII by Holbein the younger. I knew Henry by sight! Bob talked about the wood carvings, a special interest of his because he had carved wood himself. The most impressive carver was Grinling Gibbons. He carved the most delicate pieces. If you have time, Google his name and look at a few of his works.]
The house was interesting, but the grounds were more so, I thought. It had been landscaped by Capability Brown.
That night we were late getting back to the house, so the men got fish and chips for us. That is certainly better than Wimpy burgers.
Sometime during the week Carol and her children came over to beg boarding for four goldfish, so my family got to meet them. They were setting off for a holiday for a fortnight. Mary L. also dropped by to return a bootie of John’s that had gotten lost at her house.
After church Sunday we had a chance to chat with Rene A. and have a quick hello with Mary again and Barbara C. I was so glad they got to meet these people.
Yesterday after sandwiches here at the house, we set out for a trek on Pilgrim’s Way. I’ll be glad to point out our walk to anyone who comes to visit – looks terribly far from our back garden!
[This ancient walkway linked Winchester to Canterbury along the south slopes of the North Downs. According to Wikipedia, the walkway has been in use for 3,000 years. In more modern times, people made a pilgrimage to see the tomb of Thomas Becket who had been murdered in Canterbury Cathedral in 1170.]
The weather deserves a paragraph all its own. Would you believe it never rained on them??? It looked threatening several times. Even today after they left, the rain held off. Susan suggested we take a picture of rain here – they don’t believe all the stories they’ve heard of how wet it can be.
Kathie and Julie were so good with $; I certainly did appreciate all those helping hands. Lisa and Kate were happy to have a vacation from minding him.
Speaking of helping hands, once I went back to my room and found my bed made up before I was even thinking of getting that job done! Everyone helped set and clear the table.
That’s all for now. Hope to be in better writing form next week. Now that we’ve seen how much we can enjoy company, y’all come!