Sarah and I took a trip to Rochester to look about and admire the cathedral there.  That cathedral is known to have been the model for the cathedral in Dicken's last and unfinished novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood.  It is truly a wonderful and ancient cathedral that retains most of its original charm.  I had not realized though how closely the rest of Rochester was tied up in Dicken's life and work.  Gad's Hill Place, his final home is nearby and many buildings in Rochester were used in his stories.

Sarah on the trainthe red poppies are for remembrance day November 11 to honor the war dead


remembrance day activities at Rochester Cathedral


Rochester Cathedral

this is the oldest tiled floor in Britain, strange to tread in ancient ways

Rochester high street, the gentleman is advertising Victorian costumes in preparation for the Dickens Festival


this inn featured in Pickwick Papers as The Bull and in Great Expectations as the Blue Boar

this is Greathouse and was the model for Satis House in Great Expectations.  There is some speculation that it was also inspiring some house in The Mystery of Edwin Drood as Dickens was seen standing just where I am in this photo two days before his death studying the house


 This swiss chalet was a gift to Dickens and was shipped to him in hundreds of pieces from Switzerland.  He had it erected across the road from Gad's Hill Place and wrote in it until his death.  It now stands in this small courtyard in Rochester.

another fantastic old house, now an art galleryanother great old church


Sarah and I do some shopping and I go to Harrods for the first time.  I fell in love with the Egyptian Escalator, what a piece of total kitsch.  An opera singer was serenading us from one of the upper balconies.  It was in full decor for Christmas.

ceiling over Egyptian escalator

perhaps one of the best pastry shop windows evera lovely autumn tree on Sarah's street

we have tea at the Museum of Natural History Skating Rink, there are 5 rinks up in the city for the holidays

Sarah takes me to the oldest wine vaults in London where I enjoy a couple of glasses of nice port

Sarah's kittypoppy wreaths placed by the transport system


Grace joins us!

we share a bottle of Veuve at Harvey Nicholls in honor of Ab Fab

and a more reasonably priced bottle of same at home with Sarah


Grace and I go out to do some shopping and meet Ian!!

Liberty's a very beautiful but very expensive department store

Ian and Beth!!  Yes I'm in the right pub this time.  We enjoyed a meal, then went to HMV for dvd shopping.  It was really lovely to meet Ian at last and I look forward to seeing him again.  Hopefully for the TR convention!

Grace...gracing the pubwe had a restorative coffee at Paper Chase that featured the most poorly designed bathroom ever, you had to be a body builder to push the button for the water in the sink

then we all headed to Kentish Town to have a drink and dinner with George


out for a drink with Stephanie

yeah I'm ready can we GO?new incredibly cheap boots, yay!


out running around with Grace

I love London skies

even the pigeons drink Starbucks in London

Shiva was following me this day, I ran into three unexpected representations of him including this

I always get the impression from this building that an alien landed and birthed a huge egg on London


what I enjoyed at the Design Museum

the original costumes from Equussome great movie posters

some meringues in the cafeand these words from Leonardo Da Vinci


Grace and I head out for an evening with Stephanie and Marcus


Grace leaves, Joey and Andrew arrive and we meet up for a celebratory luncheon at the Vera Cruz


....and then, Andrew Joey and I attend Chichime's 7th birthday party at Mass in the crypt of a church in Brixton, WHAT a fun party, we stayed until the lights went on and the music was no more

pre party champers

a few pics from Chichime courtesy of Andrew

post party sleepies, somehow Joey got the couch Oh God the light the horrible sunlight

later on we enjoy delivered Indian food from...the Delhi Deli...ahah..hahah..ahahhaa


on Monday I take Joey and Andrew to Camden Town and to Cyberdog and we enjoy lunch at a Japanese restaurant

people just fall apart



Sarah tells kitty to tell auntie Beth goodbye


Another lovely London adventure.  Until next time...