Thursday, February 28, 2019

Old and new

We've been in London, visiting Daughter 2, her husband and Littlest Granddaughter. I love the baby's interested little face here.

She discovered to her great amusement that she could fit a raspberry on to the plastic straw of her drinking cup.

She's a very smiley little thing. (Apart from when she isn't. But she mostly is.)

We went to a playpark. The weather was amazing: it's been the hottest February since ever, which is worrying really but at the time, pleasanter than normal winter. It was 21C degrees that day, which is 69.8 F - not at all right.

We also went to Greenwich, on the other side of the river from the Isle of Dogs (which isn't an island). All I knew about Greenwich, apart from the time signal aspect of it, derived from a passage we used to do with students. Greenwich was described as "the long low wedding cake" and the Isle of Dogs as a slum, "where tramps slept out their days in doorways and empty warehouses", the latter acrid with smoke and smelling dimly of the spices that used to arrive there from the docks. As you can see from the photo above, which looks across to the Isle of Dogs, there have been major developments since this passage was written - in, I suppose, the seventies. We went through the Isle of Dogs (kings used to keep their hunting dogs there) on the DLR (Docklands Light Railway) - Mr L likes trains and the DLR is quite new and therefore interesting (it seems). The architecture was quite alarmingly modern - lots of space-agey skyscrapers full of offices, all crammed together with very little sense of comfort for humans in the outside environment. No gardens to speak of, or little shops. Certainly no warehouses, spices, tramps.

Greenwich itself was the site of a royal palace from the fifteenth century but was rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren in the late 1600s as the Royal Naval Hospital (for retired sailors) and later became a naval college. Much more my idea of elegant living (though of course much MUCH too expensive to replicate nowadays).

It's now the site of a music college and from every window we could hear students practising. Littlest insisted on dancing her way along the windows. She was very hard to move on. I don't know whether this means she's musical or just likes dancing. Her father is an actor and singer so she's maybe following in his footsteps - but it's a bit early to tell.

 At one point she decided that it was time for a sit-down and snack so that's what happened.

Ah, spring.

The next day I tidied Daughter 2's garden and was absolutely ROASTED. In February! Look at this cloudless sky. Her garden is very sheltered and I kept having to go and sit down in the shade. In contrast, today I'm tidying our garden and it's really quite chilly - much more normal but rather too much the other extreme. Moderation is what we need, O Weather.

On the way home on the train yesterday I saw this birth announcement in the Times. Could it be a joke? Would anyone actually call their children those names? I very much fear that they might. Poor little crumbs.

And now I'm missing my girls.


  1. Anonymous5:16 pm

    Poor things indeed. Littlest is so charming.

  2. I could tell our younger child was musical and athletic from the get go, I wouldn't discount that. :) Wonderful photos and weather, unseasonable as it may be. It's still cold here, and my trip to Austin (TX) to get into some warmer, nicer weather has backfired spectacularly with temperatures ranging from the 20s to the 70s. When it's warm though, there will be thunderstorms. Sigh. That name is something else! One of my favorite detectives is Hieronymus Bosch, who goes by Harry. Perhaps the brothers will be Harry and Dion. ;)

  3. Lovely in London! Cold in Ohio, but sunny, and we have all the spring to anticipate....Poor Crumbs indeed. It probably is real, unfortunately.

  4. That first photo is indeed captivating!

  5. Haha -- I'm sure someone WOULD call their children by those names -- that's the trend these days -- to be different! We went to Greenwich and stood on some of those very spots in your pictures on our trip last fall -- too bad we couldn't have timed it together. And don't worry about the weather being too hot in February -- we're here to balance it out. Today it was 12F (-11C) when we left work -- we're FREEZING!!!

  6. We too visited Greenwich on a sweltering blue sky day. We went by boat on the Thames. I remember loving the view from the river all the way along.

  7. We know someone called Zebedee.

  8. I just read your last para the birth announcement out to Rich and was puzzled by the lack of response....aah, he is "resting his eyes" after a full day out at the football!! Well, I thought it was funny!! Lxx


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