... flying over London,
to Essex, to Stansted Mountfitchet, which has a castle, but we didn't go into it, indeed we never have, because although it is a real Norman castle, or the remains of one, it has been developed into something resembling a large adventure playground:
There are tame deer there (you can just see them in the right of the picture) but they have warts, my sister says, and one of the peahens has escaped and wreaks havoc in my niece's garden, where it also laid a rather disgusting looking egg. All of which does not constitute good taste. My sister's house, however does, especially her piles of handmade patchwork quilts,
which are quite breathtaking when thrown out on display in a manner like that of Persian carpets, (I took many photos of them and hope to post them here, though it will be hard to do them full justice).
We ate rather a lot of cake, more or less every day. Oops.
We visited Waltham Abbey,
and Norwich, which we now call Nowwitch, rather than Norritch,
and met some local residents:
We watched the world swing by from my sister's living room:
and we hung out with Ziggy the cat (you are best covering yourself with a large dust sheet and to wear light-coloured clothing when you do this, since he drops his own weight in clingy white fur every day, which Tom in his better-disposed moments says is stardust)
and friends - that's my niece, who's also called Tom, on the other side of Zig; she is all loveliness,
and we met up with Natalie (the first time for me), who is all loveliness too, and whose home is surely one of the richest, most colourful, stimulating and beautiful environments I've ever been in:
And then we flew home.
I was rather erratic in my photo taking, with hundreds of some subjects and none of others, though Tom took more, some of which I might pinch. However, in the manner of springtime holidays, we returned to a garden resembling the Lost Kingdom, but also with the refreshed will and motivation to get to work on it, and to weather which has, in a week, resolved to make the transition from bleak chill to smiling sunshine. I am also carrying an excess of weight from winter lassitude and all the cake which must needs be addressed and removed, and no small number of this-and-that projects to start and to finish, so heightened activity outside and elsewhere is called for. I'll be back on the blog scene as and when.