No place like home

9 June 2019

Back in England and a train journey into Waterloo, London, surprised me because in comparison to my journey through the suburbs of Paris, I’m struck by how clean and pretty everything looks. Today I’ve been trying to do my bit as a Freeman of London by volunteering for my guild, Stationers’ Guild as it opened its courtyard garden on the City of London’s Open Garden Day.

Carol with Stationers guild

Being a member of Stationers’ is a matter of great pride for me. The day I was formally accepted and swore my allegiance I was asked to sign its huge vellum registration book. At that moment I felt I had become a part of history and each second felt timeless.

But nothing of historical interest happened at the event today and fortunately fine weather brought a number of visitors to the enchanting little garden within the Guild, nestled in the shadow of St Paul’s off on Ave Maria Lane, discreetly tucked away from the bustle of Ludgate Hill. After two hours standing and smiling, it was good to take refuge across the road at Coppa, a bit noisy, with many tourists but not frenetic and a brunch of avocado, eggs and smoked salmon hit the spot.

I then wended my way over to Horse Guards Hotel to meet up for a huge champagne tea with friends from Minneapolis. It had been around 12 years since we had been together but what a balm friendship as we picked up on news and events in each other’s lives, amazed and delighted that time had not tarnished our mutual appreciation of our shared company. Thank you Mike and Karlene!


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