Monday, December 29, 2008

Really Old

Did I mention yet that this stuff is *really* *old*? ;D Here's one of my "artsy" shots...looks weird until you see a different angle.
Now you realize what it is...Can you imagine someone carrying this on a battlefield?

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas

As we celebrate this wondrous season, it's only appropriate I return with more images from inside Exeter cathedral. This one seems particularly appropriate. Lovely.
The detail in each piece, every nook and cranny is mind-boggling.
During special celebrations the choir would sing from this balcony. It's *way* up there!
Another shot of the fabulous arches with those amazing bosses.
Another shot to try to give you some perspective, some sense of the enormity of this place. To me, whether or not one associates themselves with a particular religious denomination or not, there is still a sense of awe when you set foot into a cathedral this massive...

As for me, I am trying to be mindful of the sacredness of the Christmas celebrate what is important and to not get caught up in the materialistic trappings.
I wish for each of you peace and joy this holiday season. Tell someone you love them today.
Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

On the Nature of Grief

Have been dealing with a death in the family. That's why I've been so quiet lately. For something that everyone has to go through...that's a part of can be so difficult, even when you see it coming.

I learned a lot about grief several years ago when my maternal grandparents died within four months of each other. I was extraordinarily close to them. As difficult as it was to watch them start to fade away from this life, I was honored to be there with them and to try to be helpful to them and to the rest of my family.

Once again I am reminded that that is what life is truly about. It's not about the things. It's not about the titles. Although as we rush about our daily lives trying to fulfill our roles to get our things (at least stave off hunger and eviction!) it can seem like that's what it's about. No, it's about loving our family and our friends. About being of service. About trying to make someone smile, to make some difference in our little corner of the world. At least, that's what I believe.

But back to grief. It sneaks up on you. It zaps your energy and your mental acuity. You (I say "you" but this is my experience...) find yourself staring blankly into space and wondering just what it is that you were doing, or what it is that someone was just telling you.

One of the most interesting, and oddly useful bits of information (really? useful? Okay, maybe just interesting) I picked up on grief was something I learned from a pamphlet from a funeral home. Sighing is a recognized reaction to grief. There was something about how it helps you physiologically too (well, unless I made that part up..but I think it has something to do with getting more oxygen to your brain). But really--you sigh a lot.

A dear friend gave me a wonderful book on grieving. I'm sure there a lot of them out there. I don't have it right handy...will look the title up for you later, in case you're interested.

The minister at the service earlier this week talked about how losing someone dear to us seems particularly cruel this time of year. And it does seem that way. But we're trying to remember to be grateful for the life that we did get to share for however brief a time.

And especially this time of year, I cling to family and friends and try to tell them how much I love them. And remember that's what it's all about...all year long.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Going in the Cathedral

Just a few more outside shots before we walk in...
The sheer volume of sculptures on the front is staggering...
Here's a closer look at the ceiling bosses...more on them later.
And here's a shot to give you some sense of the magnitude of this cathedral. It has the longest medieval vaulted ceiling in the world. It takes your breath away.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Exeter Cathedral

And now we've made it to Exeter cathedral...truly magnificent...
I'm trying to give you some sense of perspective here.
Such intricate stone work...
Nice statue...forgot who it was ;D
So many nooks and crannies...can you imagine how long it took to build this without all the modern machinery?

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Here we are in Exeter. We're standing in the square outside the cathedral, and we're looking around.
It was beautiful all around the square. Here's a fancy old hotel...
It's a college town and there were a lot of students milling about. I believe they were finishing up exams and getting ready for mid-term break.
Seagulls were cruising...
And for you cathedral enthusiasts (and you know who you are!)...tomorrow we'll turn around and go in the Exeter cathedral.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

On the Move

One more picture of the Royal Standard from the outside...we really liked the "Byrrh" sign :D
Hmmm...I seem to have uploaded out of order. Oh well. We've now arrived in Exeter and are walking from the train station towards the cathedral. This neat alley caught my eye and we had to go this way.
Festive, no?
Isn't that nice ivy?
This is from the train on the way to Exeter...what a nice way to travel and see the countryside.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Royal Standard part two

There were all sorts of neat little touches to the Royal Standard. Every nook & cranny had something this door handle:
And, of course, this was my favorite picture in the place:

Thursday, November 27, 2008

The Royal Standard

The sign explains it:
Here's a shot of the outside from one angle.
There are two black cats that live there, here's one of them.
Okay, this is a bad shot, but what I'm trying to show you is that dogs were welcome inside (go figure! even with the cats!!)...This table next to us had several dogs with them. That's a black one that the woman has her arm around, and then you can see the brown one on the floor.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Outside High Wycombe museum

We fell in love with this terrific hand-made bench.
Doesn't this tree just beg you to climb it?

Monday, November 24, 2008

Inside All Saints

Neat little inside garden, complete with water fall...

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Wandering around High Wycombe

"Veg"....yeah, we don't really need all those extra know what "veg" means!
Spuds anyone? (For all you church admirers--and you know who you are--...we'll go in that one in the background soon, I promise.)
A nice shot of the market.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Misc. shots

Not much in the way of dialogue lately as still recovering from the English Creeping Crud that I brought back with me : / Anywho, this was taken from the dam I showed you earlier...I like the lovely trees...and if you look to the right of the biggest one and see the was a sculpture of a running man.
Theatre anyone?
The neighbors...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Out and About

Picture not clear? Honey, go adjust the birds on the antenna!