|The entrance throught the garden to Jane Austen's house.|
|Flowers from Jane's garden.|
|This is the chair and table where she wrote her|
most famous books. Can you believe how
small and delicate it is?!?
|This is the bed that she shared with her sister, Cassandra, her |
entire life. The beautiful dress was one of her own. It looks just
like the dresses the women wear in the movies of her novels.
At least Hollywood got that right.
|St. Nicholas Parrish Church in Chawton where Jane's |
mother and sister were buried. Jane was buried
at Winchester Cathedral. Even then, even though she
was a strange, spinster writer, they knew she was special!
Well, if you go to Chawton, just remember that the village pretty much shuts down at 4:00 P.M. (16:00 in British time.). You can't get food, but you can get a pint and skittles?!?, and the rubbish buses are doing the school runs! So, I thought, "Hey, I'll call my friendly cab service!" and went to the village call box. Well, it turns out that 4 PM is rush hour in Chawton. "Madame, we'll send a driver to get you as soon as we finish the school runs." It's that kind of village.
Just as I finished the call, the nearby primary school dismissed, and I walked down a couple of blocks behind second and third form kids and their moms and dads. The conversations were remarkable similar to any you would hear in any American home town. "How was your day, sweetheart?" "Good! I got to feed the turtle today! But then Anna said I couldn't sit next to her because she was saving the seat for Ian. What are we having for tea, Mum?" Somehow the accent made the conversations a little more exotic. I was sorry to leave Chawton. Suddenly, London seemed noisy and frantic and exhausting.
But London didn't let me down. When I got back to London Bridge Station, I followed the crowds over the Hungerford pedestrian bridge. There were street performers playing some decent Jazz at the base of the bridge, a light breeze was ruffling my hair, and the sun was kissing the waves on the Thames. Not a bad end to a beautiful day!
|The garden was the epitome of a truly lovely English garden, and I felt truly jealous!|
|The British just can't bring themselves to be truly blunt.|
|The graveyard at St. Nicholas Church. Cozy, if you are a Victorian vampire.|