“Now I’ll be able to use my English accent and people will understand me.”
To be fair, my daughter does have a unique ability to mimic accents and voices. This isn’t always a good thing as we’ve had a few awkward moments when she was younger and people may have thought she was making fun of them. Her favorite accent is a Northern English one. I believe she learnt it at an early age while watching a kids show on t.v.- but it never ceases to amaze me how spot on she is with it.
And, indeed, she will get to try it out in person this summer. True to my New Year’s Resolution, we started off 2014 by making the reservation for our trip to England this summer. I have a million ideas for our itinerary battling for attention in my head right now. But since the purpose of the trip is to do research for my next book, this sets the priority. Fortunately for both me and my daughter, the trip is based around a mother and daughter’s visits to competing tourist locations of Jane Austen and Harry Potter.
There are so many possible sites for each of these that even that will be difficult to cull. The filming of Harry Potter and the many Jane Austen stories has covered many English locales. But the point of the story will be the mother’s conflict between literary pride and commercial prejudice. Expect some romance thrown in there (for my character, not me:>) and it is a story I am really eager to write. It also is a great way to prioritize which of these many locations we visit.
I read somewhere that having a goal is a great way to focus a trip. At the same time the author wrote that while the goal might help create the itinerary, the real journey takes place in the experiences, planned or unplanned, along the way. So, while we will be excited to visit friends in England, and eager to finally go to some places my daughter has on her bucket list (like Highclere Castle, Stonehenge and The British museum for the Rosetta Stone,) the purpose of our trip is to experience our mother/daughter time, and allow it to inform the manuscript. We may even blog about it from each of our POVs... a record, so to speak, of this personal and emotional journey for each of us.
In the meantime, I’ll try to share our itinerary with you as it grows, and I’ll look forward to your suggestions. I like to hope it will be a Journey Inspired by Love and enjoyed by many.
Happy New Year! Here’s to your own Journeys Inspired by Love in 2014.
Have you visited any must-see Harry Potter or Jane Austen sites? Do you have any big journeys (literal or metaphorical) planned for 2014? I love to hear from my blog readers! And to prove it I'll give a copy of any one of Daniel Davidson's Travel Free Guides to one lucky commenter during the month of January. Leave your comment and then check back at the end of the month to see if you won. Good Luck and Happy Journey.
P.S. In case you haven't found him yet, Daniel Davidson is a travel writer with great advice on saving money while traveling. Check him out at his website: http://www.freetravelideas.com/
“It’s crazy; Federer, Sharapova and Nadal are all out now.”
This is one of my favorite times of the year with my husband. As the tennis tournament, Wimbledon, builds momentum, he and I will get up early and watch it together- a wonderful way to start my day. I like tennis, for sure, but the best part of our tradition is sharing memories of when we lived in England and had the lucky opportunity to attend Wimbledon in person. It is an iconic aspect of our time there.
Imagine… the only way to go to Wimbledon is to win a spot in the lottery (or to camp out the night before and hope you will get a released ticket.) Thus, when you get there, you already feel lucky. The day we went was a perfectly sunny, summer day. In fact, it was July 4th; our own private celebration of the American holiday while in England. We knew we had somehow scored center court seats. What we didn’t know was that our seats were about seven rows up from the court and right in the middle.
The environment at Wimbledon is one of a party. Fans are hanging out, watching matches on the big screen set up at the bottom of a grassy mound. Everyone is drinking Pimm’s or champagne and eating strawberries and cream.
Occasionally the Royal family shows up, but frequently there are famous celebrities like Richard Branson or Rupert Grint (of Harry Potter).
It’s been over ten years since that day at Wimbledon, but no matter who is left in the tournament you will find us still, Pimms Drink in hand, watching the matches on the 4th of July. It is how we now celebrate both our own country as well as our closest ally.
How do you celebrate the 4th? Are you a tennis fan? Have you ever been to a sporting event that was so special it
became part of your ongoing life? I’d love to hear about it. Please leave a comment and let me know.
In preparation for the 4th, here’s our recipe for Pimm’s Cup.
Pimm’s is a unique British liqueur with a different kind of taste. It takes some getting used to, but the spiciness of
it is very refreshing on a hot day. The Pimm’s cocktail is apparently becoming quite popular in the U.S. as well (NY Times article) Note: the best part of this drink is its simplicity to make.
2 cups - Pimm’s No. 1
6 cups - 7-Up (or ginger ale)
1 Oranges, cut into wedges
1 Lemon, cut in wedges
Other fruit to taste – I’ve added nectarine, apple, even pineapple before. Cut in wedges.
1 cucumber, sliced
Bunch of mint
In a large pitcher use a wooden spoon to muddle the mint then add the Pimm’s, the soda, the cut fruit and 5-6 slices of the cucumber. Mix with the spoon and let sit in the fridge for ½ an hour. Serve over ice with a slice of cucumber on the edge of the cup. Enjoy!
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