We just returned from a trip to England to attend a family wedding. Christmas holiday travel can be a bit intense: my youngest daughter noted that Heathrow Airport was a little more romantic in Love Actually than in real life. Other than that, the trip was great.
Before visiting Oxford for the wedding, we spent some time in the south of England. Here are my five favourite memories of that area:
Rental Car Agencies that give out free mince pies with their cars.
Arundel Castle, home to the Duke of Norfolk.
Although perhaps not this Duke of Norfolk:
“I am disgraced, impeach’d and baffled here,
Pierced to the soul with slander’s venom’d spear.”
– Thomas Mowbray (Duke of Norfolk), from Richard II
The charming village of Arundel. The emphasis is on the first syllable, so when spoken, it sounds like Frozen‘s magical kingdom of Arendelle. With a Christmas tree in the middle of town, narrow streets, and cozy shops, Arundel was practically a fairy-tale village of its own.
#2. Driving along a random country road, and coming across a sign for this:
and detouring to visit the home where Jane Austen lived for the last eight years of her life, and did most of her writing:
and having my picture taken beside Jane Austen’s writing desk:
and buying this Mr. Darcy wrapping paper: (More on the paper next week.)
“Mr. Darcy sends you all the love in the world that he can spare from me. You are all to come to Pemberley at Christmas.”
– Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
Visiting my husband’s wonderful Auntie Doreen in her hometown of Ferring-on-Sea.
“Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Heathrow Airport. General opinion’s starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don’t see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere.”
– from Love Actually