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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Windsor Castle: First Stop on our Anniversary Week-end (Back at the end of May)

I've had some time to go back through my photos and the good bit of doing that is that all of the wonderful memories that you have had whilst living somewhere come into full view and all of the stuff that you didn't like, and hence never photographed, disappears into the past!
We had a great time in our final weeks in England. We had scheduled a trip to the Cotswolds for our anniversary and it turned out to be a wonderful 2 day getaway. Part of what it made it so special was that we were able to meet old friends from Sweden who were now living in one of the places we stayed and a couple who were amongst our closest friends whilst living in London took the train up to Stratford-Upon-Avon Friday night and drove home with us on Saturday. The time spent with these friends reminded us of the rich tapestry of relationships we have forged through our living in Europe for almost 18 years and the warmth and ease with which these relationships are taken up is delightful.
We stopped at Windsor Castle on our way out to Cheltenham and really enjoyed touring those grounds. St. George's chapel is one of the most beautiful churches I've ever seen and that is saying something given how many churches we've seen. Being there sealed the deal for me. I would begin reading Pillars of Earth again once we returned and indeed, I began that book for a second time yesterday. It is one of my top 5 favorite books.
Windsor is very special. Great little town but the castle is worth touring. It's quite the mini-town inside the gates and represents all that one thinks of when one thinks of English royal residences. In fact, this very special place behind St. George's church is where the workers live. Quite a posh spot!
The changing of the guard was cancelled due to an event in London but we did get to see these guards walking around. Doug always wanted to wear one of those hats! 
We had a lovely day which was fortunate. I enjoyed seeing the miniatures display and was smitten with the teeny tiny tea sets on sale in the gift store. The history is so interesting and enjoyable to take in. I loved the fact that little crowns adorned the lampposts. Every look was spectacular. It was such a perfect way to start our anniversary weekend.
We continued onto Cheltenham where we had purchased a week-end special at a hotel there. We enjoyed afternoon massages and a relaxing afternoon. Then we met up with our dear friends. It was so lovely to connect with them after so many years. And it truly was like not a day had gone by. We enjoyed some really good food! I saw a dessert on the menu called the Eton mess and has to order it! Strawberries, cream, meringues! It was indeed a very delicious mess.
Our first full day was lovely and delightful. We looked forward to venturing further into the Cotswolds the next day.