Memories of Pemberley 2002 by Julie W
Friday, 26th July
Arriving at Victoria Coach station - calling Mary-L "Inko!!!" - wrong!!!, and the relief when everyone turned up well on time. I knew we would be OK from that point on......
The joy of seeing the coach finally turn up after being trapped in horrific M25 traffic, and the poor coach driver getting a parking ticket from a grim
faced traffic warden. Barbara Leard trying to talk him out of it! The whole coach booing the traffic warden!
Arriving at OAP - it was much nicer than I imagined it would be. Settling in with 47 others and finding it not at all a daunting experience. Caroline and all the staff were so kind. It was a real treat to be there. And the fabulous towels which were to be so missed when we were at LSH!
Dancing the Maggot with the wonderful Hanne as our very patient guide. Michele S being very elegant. Asking JenK to nod her head a la Jane Bennet! Laughing a lot. Golda and me camping it up by dancing a la Miss Bingley and Mrs Hurst.
Golda and I (room-mates) pretending to be Elinor and Marianne jumping into bed and wailing "your feet are cold!"- a slight ironic statement as it was well into the 90's!!! And no air con!
Saturday, 27th July
Arriving at Steventon Church - St Nicholas - and finding it a terribly moving experience. Bursting into tears with Myretta (not for the last time that week)...
The Rector, Michael Kenning, being very lovely and charming, and us all being aghast when he likened himself to Mr Collins or Mr Elton! Never!!
A stealth assault on the Alresford Tapestry Centre with Golda, chauffered by Caroline, zooming about in her "KA"!!!
After a very pleasant lunch, visiting Chawton House. Our driver saying sadly to me that we could not go in as the sign at the gates said " NO admittance to the general Public". Feeling very smug when I informed him that we were NOT the general public!
Visiting the "room " over the entrance where Jane is reputed to have had so much fun.
To Jane Austen's house with the wonderfully eccentric and enthusiastic Mr Tom Carpenter. The chance to view the letters and music books. So neat, so beautifully written - up so very close was something to relish. As was just sitting in Jane's garden with other congenial souls.
Hearing the pub revellers return to OAP singing Silent Night in approx 5 different languages, in order to gain admittance to the locked Rectory.
Sunday, 28th July
Canon Charles Stuart, a very gentle bear of a man - realising just how special it was for us to stand by JA's grave, and announcing to a copiously weeping Myretta "You look as if you need a hug" and enclosing her in a mammoth embrace. Who says we Brits are not emotional! LOL
Discovering the choir at Evensong were the choir of the Episcopalian Cathedral at Fort Worth! How appropriate for our very particular mix of Anglo/Americanism.
Setting out the Austenopoly game and watching the look of combined greed/triumph/amazement/pleasure as Carolyn, as Fanny Price, bought Pemberley!
Monday 29th July
Stocking up with any form of liquid refreshment for the trip to Lyme. A very hot day, indeed.
Ginny looking so appropriate in her long dress walking along the top of the Cobb.
Discovering that the Cobb was built under the command of a Captain Darcy!!!
Laughing at the outrageous Owner of the tea rooms - JA wrote all of P&P there you know!
Finding a gem of a hat shop only to find the owner was "back in 5 minutes". She lied. Probably the most costly 5 mins. in the shop's history.
Tuesday, 30th July
Feeling just like a character in NA or Persuasion - as Golda and I strolled through the town we kept meeting some of our wide acquaintance in Bath. It was a very pleasant sensation indeed.
Being sorry to have missed the Pemberley streaker...
Dinner at the Pump Room with the awful South African waiter...
Wednesday, 31st July
Wandering around Lacock. Finding the nicest place for tea with Candace and Barbara Leard. With the most beautiful tabby cat in residence.
Lunch at the Red Lion - the notice on the door reading "Turn knob other way as installed incorrectly." Only in England....
Luckington - where to begin? Our very wonderful driver asking me why we wanted to go to Luckington as "there is nothing there.."!!!!!!!!!
"It's the Church!!!!!" another instance of Regency Tour-ettes! (the ROP affliction as coined by JenK)
Being allowed to pat "Elizabeth Bennet" - quite the nicest Jack Russell of my acquaintance......
Being allowed inside the house!!!! Inside!! Yes, really!!!
Glad to see the P&P2 wallpaper still intact in the Dining Room
And no one minded the rain - we did not regard it at all.
Bath - dinner at the Assembly Rooms.
Waiting in the Octagon - certain amongst us actually running to make sure they stood by "that" fireplace.
The tour of the Museum of Costume with the wonderfully eccentric guide.
The freakin' Lord Mayor Councillor "call me Del" Herod. What a nice man - and such a funny speech thanking us all for all the money we had spent in Bath (how did he know!?)
The setting of the Tea Room for our meal. So atmospheric. So wonderful. It was such a special evening- the memory of which will be with me forever. The music, the company, the fun. And not being very good at this "stiff upper lip business" sobbing uncontrollably when the group's wonderfully generous gift of travel arrived. Too, too kind.