Monday, June 27, 2011

More views of Kent

We visited a Battle of Brittain Memorial just outside Dover.  The wall behind the statue carries the names of the men that served & not all of them are named.  So many - it was quite an emotional site.

Wind was up - so of course, you go wind surfing!!

Deal celebrated Armed Forces Day with a service.  The mayor was decked out in all his ceremonial gear & the sea cadet's band played.

The vets stood proudly.

Hollyhocks are huge.

Queen Victoria may be long gone but this letter box still bears her name!

There was a heat wave yesterday - everyone was outside & we enjoyed lunch in the garden of this pub in a village of I think 4 houses.  It was delightful & the food was pretty good too.

Sandwich (yes, real name) is an historical village not far from Deal - Sunday afternoon, lots of people out walking & enjoying the sunshine but no shops open for the tourists.  Don't always get the English mind. The pubs are open - oooooooooh!

Another strange activity - the 'beach' is all pebbles here, someone was swimming (brrrrr!) & there were people enjoying the sun, their backs to the water in front of the windbreak, enjoying some take-away.  There were even people sun-baking, lying on the pebbles - oh well, each to their own - I certainly won't be joining them.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Kent - Deal & surrounds

We have seen blue skies! Trouble is it was at 10.00pm - the summer solstice.

White cliffs - everywhere - I thought they were only at Dover.

Poppies & wheat!


Canterbury Cathedral - of course.

Inside the cathedral.

The cloisters of the cathedral.

The herb garden.

Statue - "Boy with a Boat" - on the esplanade at Herne Bay.

View through the window of Fisherman's Wharf Restaurant in Sandwich.

One of the streets of Deal where we are staying.

This was a really delicious Sticky Toffee Pudding with double cream - the end of my meal tonight & the end of our little tour - hope you enjoyed this little look at parts of Kent.

Last Day in London

Would you believe a swarm of bees in Oxford Street? An hour or so later, we were walking back to the bus & the police & bee-keepers were removing the swarm.

Liberty of London - what a beautiful building!

Hendon Hall Hotel - we were there for five nights - HofM had his first job there after he left school.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Petticoat Lane & Mail Art Friends

Petticoat Lane Markets, bustling, full of clothes, watches, handbags, souvenirs & tired children.  There were some wonderful fabrics around, sadly, all in the dresses of African women!
 Until today, we had never seen each other face to face but we do know each other's work. Andy, who started Mail Art 365 project, his wife, Elena, & Mail Artist Scott. We had an absolutely fabulous afternoon together.

There was an Artists At Home event on in Hammersmith & Shepherds Bush.  67 artists of various mediums opened their homes & studios to visitors.  We only had time to visit two homes but saw four artist's works at these 2 venues. It's a wonderful idea & so generous of the artists to let the public in to a somewhat private domain.  They also offered drinks & snacks if we wanted.

One of the artist's little back yard, her studio was off this garden - just a little bigger than my "HerShed" and just as great.

Another manhole cover.

Andy & Elena showed us their stash of mail art & postcards received from all over the world.  HofM (husband of mine) & I really enjoyed the generosity of our new mail art friends - it was a really special afternoon & I'm sure will be remembered as a highlight of this trip.

London & Jack the Ripper Tour

Along with the
Tower of London & the Tower Bridge, this building is becoming an icon of London.  Love it or hate it!

We found lots of narrow streets, very reminiscent of days gone by.

Who said the best manhole covers are in Japan - I've found some interesting ones in London, maybe not quite as elaborate as the Japanese ones.

See - it is summer - we've been told!

On to the Jack the Ripper tour - of course a lot of the original buildings have gone & the area has changed over the last 100 years.  However, this pub was one of the original ones that the victims frequented and has only been renovated in the last decade!

The buildings may have changed but not necessarily their use.

This doorway (the one with the red awning over it) was one of the sites of one of the murders - now a fish'n'chip shop, the archway has been bricked in but the building is the same.

Artwork on one of the buildings - a statement on the area???

When we ended our tour (there were approx. 25 on our tour), there were at least another 5 groups in the same area.  The interest in this killer is as strong as ever - the mystery still intrigues  an awful lot of people.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

South Coast & North-west London

Who would have thought you could grow orchids like this in England?  Our friends on the South Coast have some beautiful orchids in full bloom in their house.  I was impressed & envious.

You want fries with that????  This is, believe it or not, a veggie breakfast.  We couldn't believe the amount of  chips that came with the baked beans, 2 fried eggs, mushrooms & hash brown.  Could you eat this every morning? Once in a while is certainly enough!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Port Isaac, Cornwall to Badshot Lea

We visited Port Isaac - this is the house that is used as Doc Martin's home/surgery in the TV Series, "Doc Martin".  Don't think the Aston Martin is his!

Every Friday evening through summer, this group - "The Fisherman's Friends" - perform.  We heard them a couple of years ago, but now they are internationally famous & there are more & more people coming to hear them  They sing sea-shanties & harmonise beautifully.  It was bitterly cold, the wind just roared through the harbour entrance. We had tea at the pub & had 1/2 a lobster each - just wonderful - a fitting way to end our week in Cornwall.

OK - I'm sad, I know - saw "Bob - the plumber/restauranteur" - one of the stars of "Doc Martin" & had to ask for a photo.  He was very obliging & said he recognized the accent. They are filming another series in the area. Hurray!

Our niece has 2 springer spaniels that need a lot of walking.  So we spent an hour on the Common - the dogs just ran & ran.  This is Jerry (think about his name - Jerry Springer!!!!!!) sitting amongst the heather on the common.   Sooooo English!

Land's End to Tintagel

We went to Land's End but you have to pay to park & everyone we had spoken to said, it wasn't really worth it, so we took the photo & headed back.

These are the steps leading up to the ruins of Tintagel Castle - we did make it to the top with lots of stops for breath on the way up.  There is a fantastic view & the ruins date back a very long way.

 Walking to St Nectan's Glen - a beautiful walk through the woods - babbling brook, moss, ferns, just lovely.