Ready – my word of the week

Ready for London

I am undoubtedly a country mouse. I’d prefer to be belly down, lying in a meadow, watching hoverflies move from one wildflower to the next, while listening to the meowing of the buzzards overhead, than tramping along pavements in town. I may see one or two people and a couple of cars on our dog walk, at home, but that is it for the day. London is always a shock. I’m never ready.

London

I went to London with both my daughters this week. Eldest was up there to organize a visa and Middle was along for the ride. As Middle and I had time to kill, waiting for her, we took a quick walk to Tower Bridge and saw Pudding Lane and the Tower of London on the way.

Before children, I spent a few years working in and around the City of London. I used to navigate around with ease. I guess the passage of time and all the new glass buildings, which have sprung up in the meantime, threw me off, as I found it difficult to get my bearings at first. Got there in the end, but it did remind me of being in my 20s again and surreptitiously clutching an A-Z. It wasn’t until I had sat down in a café, drinking a hot choc, that I realised we’d walked past my old office a few minutes earlier.

I love the contrast of the new and old everywhere I looked and wish we had had longer to wander. It is a definite improvement.

It soon became obvious, via Eldest’s despondent texts, that the queue for the visa was going to take hours, so we left her and headed off, via the underground, to the British Museum.

Hunting scene carved

British Museum

We spent a few hours looking around the museum. My big sister used to take me there during the school holidays when I visited her. It has changed a lot too. We headed up to the European area, to see the Sutton Hoo exhibits, stopping off at a few other rooms that caught our eyes. As always, I was keen to see the hand crafted exhibits and crafting tools. I can’t help marvelling at the intense skill and love that is put into these pieces.

We found the clock area, just as Eldest texted to say she was ready to join us. She’d spent half the day in the bureau, waiting, and just ten minutes having her paperwork processed. Needless to say, she wasn’t as charmed as we were by the chiming mechanisms of the clocks, so we grabbed a drink and something to eat before the museum closed.

It was a long day. Eldest is used to navigating cities now, especially after her time in Paris. Middle took over leading us through the underground too and is definitely ready to do it without my help. It is good to know as I suspect that London will call them at some point in the future.

Iron Age shield at the ready

Getting ready

The rest of the week has been taken up getting kit ready for Youngest’s activities. Last weekend, he was off on a practise walk with a huge rucksack. Honestly, it always surprises me how my children do these walks with such a heavy load on their backs. Anyway, he needed extra kit and suitable food for the trip, so we had an outing to Bristol. His walk, the next day, was good and he came back suitably tired.

As I write, he is boarding a ferry on his way to Austria for a skiing trip, his second expedition of the week. He had most of the kit, as he went last year, but I still needed to get him a few travel size toiletries and snacks for the journey.

I took the two girls to a different town, this time, and we popped into a few charity shops while we were there. I do love pottering and found a few more books which were on my wish list, so I was pleased. Also new curtains for the landing at the top of the stairs. I’m looking forward to getting them ready to replace the old ones.

Last sleeve almost finished and ready to attach to jumper

Crafting

Still working on my second sleeve of Youngest’s jumper. It’s faster to knit this time as I’ve memorized the pattern and can knit without referring to the instructions constantly.

Books

I finished Murder before Evensong by Richard Coles. I’m a bit meh about it and was ready to move on to something else. I’ve started Perfect by Rachel Joyce. Early days so I’m not going to judge it yet.

I’m hoping to get a bit of time to myself this weekend. Maybe some reading. Definitely a bit of curtain sewing. It will be all go again next weekend, so I shall savour some time to myself this weekend. Although, as the weather is wet, I think this country mouse will be mainly tucked up a chair rather than lounging outside watching the wildlife. I’ll save that for the summer.

Joining in with Anne’s Word of the Week linky. It really is nice to be joining in again and thank you for welcoming me back.

P.S. I left comments on everyone’s posts last week, but checking back, I think some of them got munched and spat out. Sorry if you think I missed you out.

 

Word of the Week linky

11 comments

  1. I hate it when comments get munched up. I did tell one of my linkers but my posts were appearing later, I was getting an error message though. I think she’s fixed it now. I have been to London only once in a wheelchair and I didn’t enjoy it, I don’t think I’d do it again. What a long wait your daughter had, I’m glad you were able to entertain yourself in the meantime. I have to admit I was a bit Meh about Murder Before Evensong too, but I might read another because I didn’t enjoy Richard Osman’s Thursday Murder Club so much as his following books.

    1. It’s funny you mention wheelchairs in London. I wasn’t looking for it, but I did notice a lot more ramps and access for wheelchairs this visit. Admittedly, I wasn’t using them, so I don’t know how useful they would be. It’s a shame you’ve been put off. Interesting that you weren’t enamoured by the book. I very nearly gave up on it.

  2. I haven’t been to London for about 10 years, I really don’t like it and I don’t have much time for Birmingham either (which is a lot nearer) Isn’t is always the way at these places, queue for hours and sorted in ten minutes. I’ve read two of Richard Coles’ books and enjoyed them. I read at bedtime and his books don’t require too much concentration! Enjoy your weekend

    1. I do put off going to London, but really enjoy it once I’m there. There is so much to see. I’ve not been to Birmingham for ages. Lived there briefly. Good point about needing something uncomplicated at night. Maybe I ought to have an interesting day time book and a lighter night time book on the go at the same time.

  3. I never thought I would be a country person but after living in quite a rural area for coming on 5 years the thought of going to London terrifies me! It sounds like you had a great trip out. It’s a shame your eldest had to queue for the visa so long. The British Museum sounds a fantastic place to visit.
    It sounds like your youngest is having some great adventures.
    I got your comment on last weeks post. Thank you. x

    1. I’m the same. I prefer the quieter life. I only go to London when I have to, but I did enjoy taking in some of the sights while we were there. I’m sure a city break would be good fun. It’s been eons since I went to the British Museum. We probably spent the optimal time there before we were overwhelmed by it all. So much to see.

  4. Love reading about your week. Sounds like you have lovely kids who love venturing out. I know how it is with these visa places but you gotta do what you gotta do. It sorta reminds me of how challenging it must be for people in war-torn areas who need to get travel documents processed quickly. The point is, we are grateful for a day’s wait as it could be so much worse. We do venture into London sometimes but we just wander around as we don’t know anywhere and are rubbish with maps etc. Well done to your kids. Enjoy your books and knitting too.

    1. Ah very true with the visas. That is a whole other level of stressful that I hope none of have to experience. There is so much to see and do in London that I think just by wandering you see a lot. There is history to see around every corner and lots of it are for free.

  5. How lovely to have a trip to the British Museum – sounds like you had a lovely time. That Iron Age shield is beautiful. I used to work in London pre-children too and there have been a lot of changes since I worked there. Hope your youngest enjoys his skiing trip. Hope you had a nice relaxing weekend and enjoyed some time for yourself. #WotW

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