2nd September. I'm writing this on board the flight from Minneapolis to Denver, which has taken off 3 hours after schedule meaning I'm going to have to make a quick scamper from this flight to the connecting one to Anchorage. Hope there aren't any more holdups!
Staying with Paul and Nancy was a delight. They are so warm and welcoming, their home is an expression of the two of them, creative and interesting, with lovely old polished furniture, pictures, and many many photos of family and friends, Their garden is so creative too, and has obviously grown and matured during the years they've been there. Blue Jays (so beautiful) Red Cardinals, Purple Finches, woodpeckers, and amazingly agile squirrels. Trees grow in lush green profusion, and so do the flowers and vegetables.
We did some shopping at an REI store (just a little!), had a major visit to the MN State fair, (hot, with so many people), then an evening meal overlooking the St Croix river at Stillwell.
I don't know what happened to my London and UK post. It seems to be missing! I loved being at Marks, and meeting all his international and fascinating flatmates. Mark and I met my cousin Judith Phillips and her husband Chris up in Oxford, and getting to know them both. It was the first time Judith and I have ever actually met, and it was lovely actually seeing her face to face. Her Dad, my Uncle David, died 2 days previously, so I was sad that I wasn't able to get to see him before he passed away. Judith showed us around Oxford, her old stamping ground. I have a cousin who graduated from Oxford with Honours!! Wow.
We also visited my niece Libby Lampert (Irwin), and met her darling 1 year old son Harry for the first time. Life's not been at all easy for Libby, and we really feel for her. A plucky young woman, managing a young son plus working, all on her own. I hope it won't be too long before she's able to relocate back to NZ.
Mark took me to Hampstead Heath for the last night of the Kenwood Proms - fireworks and all. What a great evening.
That's mainly the UK. Could go on for ages! Loved it. Loved Mark's flat. Loved being with Mark!