Summer of Sport

{Beth’s Note: We interrupt my very sporadic coverage of Christmas in London 2018 to bring you this guest post by M that takes us back to last summer.}

The Summer of 2018 will be one of those things that, 42 years from now, kids will roll their eyes about when their English grandparents regale them with the same stories they’ve heard a dozen times before, just like I rolled my eyes when all the English reminded me about how great it was in 1976.

But those future grandparents will tell these stories for good reason. It was sunny. And hot. For weeks at a time. And England made the semifinals of the World Cup! They even won a knock-out round match on penalty kicks. This summer was so great, my grandkids will probably roll their eyes when I tell them about it, and I grew up in that magical land (America) where summer is sunny and hot every year, just like summer should be. Continue reading

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An English Summer Seaside Holiday, Part 2

{Read An English Summer Seaside Holiday, Part 1, here}

On Tuesday of our week in Cornwall, we visited St Michael’s Mount. The thing about visiting this island is that when the tide is low, a causeway appears and you can walk over from the mainland in Marazion. But when the tide comes back in, the causeway completely disappears under water, and you have to take a ferry.

So we waited for the causeway to open that morning, and walked across.

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An English Summer Seaside Holiday, Part 1

At the end of August, we took a weeklong family holiday to Cornwall, which E had been excited for all year. I was a bit worried it wouldn’t live up to her expectations, since she’d been asking when we were going to Cornwall since before Easter. But as it turned out, it did; she had a fantastic week filled with kite-flying, sand castle-building, fish and chips, and ice cream cones.

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Our cottage in the town of Marazion was a Saturday-to-Saturday rental. Because driving there takes at least 5 hours (with no traffic) and there’s always traffic in London, we left at 4:30 a.m. Which was the best decision we could have made. We were sitting in a café in Marazion, ordering breakfast, by 9:30.

We passed Stonehenge right at sunrise, and there wasn’t a tourist in sight!

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Beth, Bath, and Beyond

“They arrived in Bath. Catherine was all eager delight; her eyes were here, there, everywhere, as they approached its fine and striking environs… She was come to be happy, and she felt happy already.” —Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey

I studied abroad in Bath in the autumn of 2002 and spring of 2003, and it was one of the best years of my life. Since moving to London, I’ve been back several times: with my husband, E, and in-laws; with my friend Shelby; with my friend Emily; and with my parents just a couple weeks ago. It’s a perfect day trip from London. It only takes an hour and a half by train, and Bath is so small and walkable that you don’t need a car there.

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May Holiday at Moonfleet Manor

For the first May bank holiday weekend of 2018, we rented a car and drove southwest to Dorset, on the Jurassic Coast. The drive took us 4 hours, thanks to all the traffic of everyone else who wanted to get out of the city for the long weekend, and we arrived right at the girls’ bedtime on Friday night.

(Side note: The signs along the way made for interesting reading. Actual names of places in Dorset: Tincleton, Puddletown, Tolpuddle, Grimstone, Puncknowle, and Durdle Door.)

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