What Happened to a Group of Americans on March 20, 2011

Hello Readers,

Mary is the name.  I am a part of the Go Grace trip to Britain.

I admit, I’m a geek.  I geek out fairly easily.  March 20th was no exception.  We got to explore both Westminster Abbey (where a lot of dead people are) and the Tower of London (where a lot of people were killed).

When we got off the Underground, Dr. Sauders told us we would be coming out right under Big Ben and Parliament.  We nodded and smiled.  The day before, we had been across the street from Parliament.  All of us almost passed out because we were only a few feet from Big Ben.  *snap*  *flash* Great photo opportunity.

When we got to Westminster, we waited a couple of minutes to get into the church.  During those few minutes, I began to feel very mortal.  This church has been around for at least 700 years.  It survived fires, bombings, and being subjected to the elements.  Yet there it stood and there it would stand long past the time I was dead.  I know that we are mortal bodies and immortal souls, but just the outside of this church could quiet me from the movement and noise of London.

I found the tombs or memorials of all the people I wanted to see.  William Wilberforce and Pitt the Elder and Younger were right in front of you when you entered.  Henry V and several other kings were scattered across the church.  Queens and their favorites were here and there.  The Coronation chair was in repair, but one was able to see it through a window.  Chaucer was chilling with Tennyson and Browning.  The inventor of the pianoforte was sleeping next to two musicians.  I even got to see the oldest door in England.  (This makes me wonder what is the oldest door in the world and the second oldest door in England.  Who keeps track of these things?)

After a very British lunch of KFC, we went to the Tower of London.  I must pause for a moment in respect to my camera, whose first battery died while I was taking pictures of the edge of old Roman London.  *pause*  Okay, continuing on with bloody tower and all the dead bodies!

We went on a tour of the Tower being lead by a Beefeater.  (No, not even the Beefeater’s know why they are called such.)  We were told the history of the fortress from the Traitor’s Gate to the chapel.  In the chapel were hundreds of bodies and only about five were able to be identified.   (These five were Anne and George Boylen, Katharine Howard, Jane Grey, and one other that I cannot remember or find.)

After paying our respects to the dead, we visited the royal jewels.  Royal jewels.  That is all.  Ignore the drool.  The greed has passed.

We saw the armory and the torture chambers.  We even got too walk across the top of part of the walls!  The ravens ignored us but obviously loved the attention.

We returned to Parliament and Big Ben to see it all lit up.  Go.  See it.

I loved this day.  Both of these places were full of history and made me reflect on God, life, the universe, and everything.  I am very glad I went on this trip.

Sincerely,

Mary

Shout Outs – Mom – I am eating well and often.  I have not been given mad dragon disease.

Dad – I got to pass by the house of where one of the members of Queen was born and raised.  J

Annie – I walked all over Henry VIII and Charles Brandon.

Brooke – I have a picture of crumpets, but alas, they do not sell them in a way that is legal.  I have something else for you though, since crumpets are just crumpled shortbread cookies.  Hope you are having fun in Florida.

 

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