The Farewell Tour…

Vern’s return meant we were that much closer to packing up and leaving England, so we needed to prioritize the list of “must sees” and “must dos” to align with Judith’s “must work”. To that end, we were on the go from morning until night, but we accomplished a lot of traveling, visiting, and Worcester appreciating in that time.

Here are a few of the “reruns”…

*First up was the city of Birmingham to see the newest gallery devoted to the Staffordshire Hoard. The story behind this recent find is nothing short of amazing, and no one tells the story better than National Geographic:

*Second was the city of Ludlow to stroll through the castle grounds, walk the wooded trails, amble through the city center, and dine in our favorite restaurant, The Green Café.

*Third were the Malvern Hills, and we accomplished our goal of hiking from one end to the other with a group of friends (it took two outings to complete the journey, by the way) These photos highlight the view from the southwest end of the Malvern Hills – Eastnor Castle, then a view of an Obelisk erected in 1812 to honor the loss of the Earl’s son during the Peninsular War, and finally a group photo of the hearty climbers after reaching Beacon, the highest point!

*And, fourth, a trip to the BIG CITY…LONDON. We boarded the early train and began the day at Victoria and Albert Museum. After several hours of gallery gazing we took a much needed lunch break in the V & A café. Then we met our guide and set off on the Chocolate Tour we booked through the London Midland rail office. After 2 1/2 hours of chocolate sampling (and purchasing) in the Soho neighborhood it was time for a long walk along the Thames River. We crossed over the Tower Bridge to see the poppy display at the Tower of London, “Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red” designed by Paul Cummins. I don’t know what we expected, but the display of 888,246 poppies covers the moat which surrounds the Tower. The numbers are just staggering. Seen as a whole it is a massive, emotional exhibit. The ceramic poppy display lasted until Armistice Day, Nov 11th, after which point the poppies were cleaned, packed, and mailed to the individuals who bid for them online.

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