Saturday, July 09, 2011

Ageless London

I am starting to get excited about our upcoming trip. I generally start to get excited about one month prior to a departure.

We shall leave on August 3 and return on August 14. Our initial plan was to travel between August 5 and August 14, but we extended our travel period by two days once we ascertained that there were seven performances we wanted to catch in London.

The first five days will be spent in London. The second five days will be spent in Southern England.

I find London the most fascinating city in the world. London is not the most beautiful city in the world, nor the most charming, but I find it endlessly fascinating.

My sister-in-law tells me that she does not miss London. She tells me that visiting London is one thing, and living there quite another. She says that she could never live in London again. I think, above all, she appreciates the spaciousness of the U.S. as well as the lack of red tape Americans enjoy.

My sister-in-law finds it amusing that we are interested in historic London churches. My middle brother and I have visited far more London churches than she has—and we have a long list of London churches we visited in 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005 that we want Josh and my parents to see for the first time next month.

Reviewing the list of churches, my sister-in-law asks me, “Isn’t this going to be frightfully boring?” Then she identifies the handful of churches on our list in which she has attended funerals—the only reason she has ever visited those particular churches—and says, one by one, “Are you SURE you want to visit this church? I wouldn’t go out of my way to see this one.”

In fact, only one of our five days in London will be devoted to historic churches. Two days will be devoted to The Imperial War Museum and two days will be devoted to theater (matinee and evening performances both days). We shall try to visit a couple of other interesting things on the mornings of our theater days.

This year, our visit to London is governed, as a practical matter, by performance schedules. We have managed to squeeze five plays and two ballet performances into five days and six nights in London—with everything else tailored to the performance schedules.

As soon as we get back from Britain, Josh and I will head for Oklahoma to spend ten days with Josh’s family.

We must do these things while we may.

After Labor Day, Josh and I will be working.

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