Memories of London

April29

I’m tardy with my post this morning because I have been enthralled by snippets of the Royal Wedding.  No I did not set my alarm for a ghastly hour but when I awoke at my normal time, I reached for the remote at the exact moment of the balcony scene.  

I consume a lot of news by osmosis, as my husband is a news junkie.  In fact, he has a newspaper collection and I know that he will purchase two copies tomorrow-one that we will enjoy with our coffee and the second which will be wrapped and put away to pull out in the future and see what the world was like on April 29, 2011.  I spend countless hours with D watching elections and protests and war.   Today I was delighted to witness love and hope and new beginnings.

 

I have been to London on a couple of occasions but most memorable was my post-university excursion to Europe at just this time of year.  I was a picky eater in those days-I mean horribly so!  The first time I had ever eaten a fried egg was on that trip. 

The London leg of our journey held many other first tastes:  -Salty, crunchy crackling from a suckling pig consumed on a floating dining room on the Thames.  -Bangers and mash at a boisterous pub called “The Spread Eagle”.  -Halibut and chips served in newspaper with malt vinegar and nary a bottle of ketchup in sight.  But most memorable of all: we mistakenly found ourselves in an upscale restaurant where Shahs had been reputed to dine and where a plate of  vegetables was ordered on my behalf.  New asparagus and zucchini; green and yellow beans; the sweetest of beets and tiny potatoes-all tasted for the very first time (except the potatoes of course).  I recall the array of lemon slices and cellars of salt and sweet butter that accompanied the dish.  And then I remember the price: a cocktail and a plate of vegetables for 70 pounds which back then represented a huge percentage of my discretionary budget which was to have lasted seven weeks!

The sting of the memory makes it very real even today as I saw Westminster Abbey and the Mall and Buckingham Palace.  London looked her best today.  I add my warmest wishes to Diana’s precious William and his beautiful Kate.

Kath’s quote: “But I will place this carefully fed pig
Within the crackling oven; and, I pray,
What nicer dish can e’er be given to man.”-
Aeschylus


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