Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Golden Birthday

A couple months ago I read "Persuasion" by Jane Austin and found a quote that suited me perfectly this year. It reads as follows,

"It sometimes happens that a woman is handsomer at twenty-nine that she was ten years before, and generally speaking if there has been neither ill health nor anxiety, it is a time of life at which scarcely any charm is lost"

I like to think this is the situation in which I find myself.

We spent the day at the Tower of London. It is a very interesting place. It was originally a fortress, a royal palace and a prison (especially for royals and high status prisoners). It has also been the treasury for the Crowned Jewels of the United Kingdom since 1303.

We had to wait in line to get tickets since there were tons of other tourists there today and it was pouring down rain. Happy Birthday to me!!

When we got inside we got in on a Yeoman Wardens tours. These are the guards of the Tower, they are real military men who guard the tower, live there, in those houses you see behind us with their families and take us all on tours and give us all the good stories about the Tower.

In the tour they told us that these doors are painted blue because soldiers used to be illiterate and a blue door signified a civillian residence and they would not enter. He also told us about the Ravens. Legend has it that if the crows leave, the whole kingdom will fall, so there is a full time raven keeper on staff to make sure they are happy and stick around.
The "tour" was conducted exclusively in the chapel on the grounds since it was raining a ton. The warden told us about some of the most famous prisoners of the tower, namely Anne Boylin and Henry the VIII's other wife Katherine who were both beheaded in this square. We saw both their burial sites. Creepy...
We also got to go into the royal armoury and see tons of suits of armor and other cool weapons. After that I had to get Jason to the airport so I left Melanie at a Starbucks and got Jason his things and off to the airport. I was of course really sad to see him go! It was so much fun to have him around. He is so fun and easy to get a long with.
Once I had seen him off (which took far longer than expected) I went back to find Melanie and she was gone. I assumed she was back in the Tower so I went back in too and saw all the crowned Jewels. There are some seriously huge stones in those crowns! It was really incredible to see them up close.
This is the view of Tower Bridge from the outter wall of the Tower. Stunning.
I went back to Starbucks to wait for Melanie, after a while she didn't turn up so I assumed she had gone back to my place (luckily she has an excellent sense of direction). I found her there and Charlie came over a little later and we made some pasta and watched "Young Victoria" - a fantastic story of Queen Victoria and her husband Albert.
During the day when I was taking Jason to the airport and finding Melanie I was feeling a little down like I wish my golden birthday had been a little more epic. And then I came to realize that I am competing with myself! I just went snowboarding at the Matterhorn and I live in London and I do amazing things every day! Doing something epic would be so common place for me right now. It has been a golden year! So more than anything I was just glad to be with good friends and family. What a great day!

1 comment:

Jaime said...

Jane Austen must have had you in mind when she wrote that! Happy belated birthday!!! I miss your charming face :)