Sunday, April 26, 2009

London Spring

There are songs about Paris in the Springtime, but I think London would maybe be hard to beat. Gardens, trees, shrubs, flower boxes..... and blooms everywhere.
For such a densely populated large city, there are lots of parks and all are well kept. Click on the collage to see a full screen view of some of the prettiest.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Talbot

At the Family History Centre we have a great view, through some large picture windows, into a cobble-stone street called the 'Mews'.

The used-to-be carriage barns are all now houses that are valued at upwards of £2m. One day last week I looked out and saw a remarkable car. With camera in hand I went for a look.

The car turned out to be a 1930 Talbot, and not just any old Talbot, but the one that competed in the 1930 Le Mans 24-hour race and took 3rd place. It looked totally in original condition without any restoration. Here are a few pictures and the race results.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Top Deck

When we arrived in London seven months ago, we were greeted at the door of our flat by Don and Claudia Innskeep. They had stocked our cupboards with food, filled a vase with fresh flowers and hung cute towels in our kitchen. Don took us to pay our council taxes, obtain our freedom passes and showed us how to get around on the London double decker buses. We have enjoyed many fun times with them at work and at play. One simple pleasure he taught us was to climb the steps of a bus to the top deck and ride around the city and see the sites. We have done this many times. Sunday night, the Innskeeps traveled home from church on the top deck. When they neared their stop, Don started down the steps when the bus jerked sending Don flying head first, down the steps. When Claudia reached him, she saw that his ear was nearly severed and he was bleeding profusely. An ambulance was called and he was taken to the hospital. Claudia called Jim and and asked that he and another elder give him a Priesthood blessing before a plastic surgeon sewed him back together.
He is home today - recovering. We will all hold on a little tighter when we ride the bus - and forget the top deck.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Finding My Past

The Family History Center was closed for Good Friday and we had a scheduled P-Day on Saturday. So, with the approval of our Mission President we took an overnight trip to explore HADSPEN, the birth place of my great grandmother, Ellen (Eleanor) Hill. Hadspen is a Hamlet, which is considered a small village of 5-6 buildings and families. Hadspen is very much the same as it was in the mid-ninteenth century when Ellen and her family lived there.
Here are some pictures of Haspen with homes that were built in the 1700's. I have not been able to find which one might have been my ancestors, but for sure it was one of them. We talked to some of the residents, who were very friendly and hospitable. We also went to the Parish church that was there in the same era (above left). Some of the family died in Hadspen, so we looked through the graveyard for any 'Hill' names but couldn't find any.

We stayed at the Greystones House, which is a Bed&Breakfast just outside of Castle Cary. This home was built in the early 1800's with subsequent additions. It is beautiful, our room was a delight and we were treated to a 'full English' breakfast, which means, sausage, eggs, bacon (ham to most), a rather large mushroom, stewed tomatoes, toast and local honey or preserves, juice and museli (cereal).
Check the link at the right [Hadspen] for more pictures.
More later..... Elder Watts