Wednesday, February 18, 2009

In The Mail

 

My shiny new passport arrived in the mail yesterday. I let my old one expire, because, due to embarrassment, I did not plan to leave the country while Bush was in office. I didn't want to wander the world saying, "I don't like him, either". Many thought me silly, but I simply could not go. Here in the US, we were all in the mess together.

In exactly one month, I will leave for England, and I can't wait. My woolly socks shipped the other day. I usually can't wear wool against my skin, but I tried out the socks yesterday, and they seem fine on my feet and legs. As of now, I plan to leave my long wool coat at home and take an all-weather coat. Mine doesn't have a zip-in liner, but with enough layering, the all-weather should do. Plus, it's waterproof, and I see that the sun peeps out only occasionally, interspersed with lotsa rainy days. The humidity and I should get along quite well, because living in south Louisiana, I will be already acclimated. I'll look at the extended weather forecast right before I leave, and I may change my mind if cold weather extremes are in the offing. Here's a link to the average temperatures in Leeds in March.

Durham Cathedral is on my list of places that I want to visit. I hope that the picture below wasn't taken in March. I don't usually pray about the weather, but I may change my mind.


Picture from Wiki.

46 comments:

Padre Mickey said...

Aren't the pictures on the pages of your new passport awful? I couldn't believe it when I got mine last year; just another reminder of the tackiness inflicted on all when Republicans are in power.

Have a good trip.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Padre, they are pretty bad. Of course, the tacky pictures are as nothing, compared to the rest of the godawful legacy that the Bush maladministration bequeathed to us.

Anonymous said...

When you get to Durham, please give my regards to Bede and Cuthbert. I spent two weeks there in 1997. It is a very holy place. Wish I were going with you.

Paul the BB

JCF said...

Speaking of England: what's up w/ Crazy Arse???

[When I went to "OCICBW", all the entries were gone, just the right-side links up. I checked it on both IE and Firefox]

Is he having another one of those "my bishop is out to get me" conniptions? [Dear God, please don't let this be the price of his going after that job he really wants!]

Mimi, as his #1 antagonist (crush), if you've got any info, spill!

Grandmère Mimi said...

Wish I were going with you.

It's not too late, Paul. The other man in my life is not going.

I shall give your regards to Bede and Cuthbert, if you decide you can't make it.

JCF, I have no insider information. It's probably just a glitch.

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

Doorman Priest's blog was empty yesterday, until he pressed a few random buttons. Then it all reappeared.

Might help in this case, also ;=)

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

Regarding temperatures...

Around freezing point in a humid place is really COLD! not to be imagined!

Wool is the only thing that can help. Think Shetland...

I have just spent 3 nights in our cabin in the island off Gothenburg. It was 10 centigrades and no water. I had to wash myself in bottled water.

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

That is 10 centigrades indoors.

IT said...

I hate cold weather. Brrrrr. I was talking to a colleague this weekend--it was 55* and pouring rain in SoCal and I was bundled up like the michelin man. My colleague in NYC laughed and laughed.

Mimi, one presumes you ARE visiting Newcastle....?

johnieb said...

Whatever would Mimi visit Newcastle Upon Tyne for, IT?

Mimi, have a lovely and blessed trip. And look for Merino Wool products; I haven't worn anything else for twenty years (wearing a pair as I write, matter of fact)

Grandmère Mimi said...

Mimi, one presumes you ARE visiting Newcastle....?

IT, I'm meeting MadPriest in the Yorkshire Moors. If I don't return....

Grandmère Mimi said...

Johnieb, I have a good supply of winter clothing from travel to cold places. I even have snow boots, but I'm not packing them. I'm trying to travel light, thus, I'm trusting that there will be no snow in March.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Göran, I'm not ignoring your words. I may change my mind about the coat.

suzanne said...

I'm so glad you're going to meet "That crazy assed priest" as Tracie says. And yes, you'll return. Can't wait to hear all about it.

Sue

Mary Clara said...

Mimi, I don't know about snow, but there could be mud!

Grandmère Mimi said...

Suzanne, you think I'll return. The Moors are haunted - or so they say.

Mary Clara, mud! Well, I'll have to cope.

ginny s. said...

Mimi, have a wonderful trip! Take lots of incriminating photos for us. Keep warm with light things like scarves--silk inside, wool outside. And hats, gloves, & wool socks. Best regards to MP & other online folks.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Ginny, I'm not leaving for a month, but I am excited. It's been 10 years since I've left the country!

susan s. said...

Oh, Mimi, Durham is a lovely cathedral. Very male in architecture. The circumference of the columns equals the height of the columns. Yes, I know they don't look like that, but it's true. Maybe if your are lucky(?) you might see Bishop Wright.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Susan, you mean have an audience with His Grace? Shall I tell him that I dropped out of his class?

Erp said...

Well England in March should have some spring flowers though I'm not sure which gardens will be best at that time of year. I'm sure MP and others will make sure you see some lovely churches (and perhaps some lovely singing).

Durham has some strong family connections for me though I've never been there. A collateral branch provided railways, mines, and MPs for County Durham in the 19th century (my branch moved south and stayed poor which is not the usual order of things).

So does Bishop Wright yearn for the old days when the Bishop of Durham was the secular as well as religious leader of the county (which made him unique among English bishops)?:-)

Grandmère Mimi said...

Erp, I wonder with you if Bishop Wright longs for the days of the Prince Bishops at Durham.

When I travel, I make a beeline for old churches and art museums. It's what I do, but it would be lovely to see a few flowers, too.

JCF said...

I'm meeting MadPriest in the Yorkshire Moors. If I don't return....

We'll suspect you've been drained of blood! :-0 [Heh. Maybe that's why we've never seen a (recent) picture of the Mad One: he can't be photographed!]

*****

JCF, I have no insider information. It's probably just a glitch.

Maybe it was, but I've got proof!

Jane R said...

Mimi, two words: silk underwear. Warm, warm, warm. You wear the silk as the first layer against the skin. And I don't mean silk frillies, I mean things like tights or leggings and undershirst (though they do make cute camisoles) and also silk socks and glove liners. Keeps you toasty warm, feels great, and doesn't add any bulk or weight.

Now of course they are making synthetics that do the job (see the Damart catalog -thermolactyl and some newer fabrics - it's been a while since I've bought any). Check 'em out. Those thin layers are great for chilly climates and they really do insulate nicely.

SCG said...

I don't blame you for not wanting to leave the country during the Bush Error. My partner is French, and she had to endure the questions of family and friends who asked the repeated "Why" questions... to which the only response any of us in Florida had was, "Don't blame me. My vote was stolen in 2000!"
Traveling mercies on your trip!

Grandmère Mimi said...

JCF, it's been happening on my blog, too. I expect it's a problem with Blogger.

Jane, I hear you. Silk!

SCG, quite a few of the folks who traveled abroad said that most people were kind and did not blame all Americans for Bush's blunders.

I have been in zero degree weather and below freezing weather. We went to Ellis Island in 18 degree weather. It's not as though I've never experienced cold weather. I've been in Chicago in February, New York and Connecticut in January. I'll be fine.

Song in my Heart said...

I second Jane on the silk. The John Lewis department store sells it over here, though it's quite pricey--around £30 for leggings, IIRC.

How long will you be in England? If you're going to be in London, I'd be honoured to meet you, though I understand completely if you're very busy and would rather not try to fit in a meeting with a comparatively random stranger from the internets.

Mike in Texas said...

Did you get one of those new passports with biometric computer chips?

We both had to renew ours about 18 months ago. Ed got a regular one, mine is one of the new fangled computerized ones with really ugly pictures on the pages reminiscent of Communist propaganda.

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

layers upon layers... that will do it

... and for goodness sake: Keep dry!

IT said...

Lots of places to hide a body in the Yorkshire moors....

Whose body, who's to say?

Grandmère Mimi said...

Mike, I didn't ask for the computer chip version, but the pictures resemble what you describe. There's one of cowboys and cattle that I refer to as the "Brokeback Mountain" picture.

I gather that all the passports have the same pictures. Here's a story from the New York Times. My favorite commentary on the new design is, “It is like being given a coloring book that your brother already colored in,” said Michael Bierut....

Keep dry!

Göran, how does one do that when it rains nearly every day.

Lots of places to hide a body in the Yorkshire moors....

IT, I can see the headline:

"ELDERLY AMERICAN WOMAN DISAPPEARS IN YORKSHIRE MOORS"

susan s. said...

Ah, I see the new version of the passport was 'developed' by committee... That explains everything. One more thing you wouldn't want to see being made or developed; sausage, politics, and passports.

Erp said...

Well England doesn't lack for old churches or art museums. Are you visiting any 'wool churches'?

Are you getting a National Trust Touring pass?
http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Grandmère Mimi said...

Song, I meant to respond to you. I'd love to meet you, but I'll be in the North. I've been to London several times and traveled in the south of England, so I wanted to see parts of the country where I haven't been. We're having a gathering in Leeds on March 28, if you'd like to join us. I know it's a long way for you.

If you're interested, see this post.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Susan, one good thing came out of a committee: the King James Bible. I consider it a miracle that a literary masterpiece came out of a committee. It was a good translation for its day, and I still love to read it.

Erp, the touring pass is worth looking into. I see that it must be purchased in advance. I know that some churches are part of the Trust. What about museums? I'll check it out.

I'm not familiar with the "wool churches". I'll look them up, too.

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

An umbrella, dear Mimi!

I bought one in London many years ago, but it blew to pieces at Lund c:a 1994 (at Lund the wind comes from all four directions simultaneously).

Grandmère Mimi said...

Göran, an umbrella? Is that all it takes? No matter where I go, I always pack an umbrella.

The wind can be brutal on umbrellas.

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

Wool churches were built with the proceeds of grand scale sheep hearding in the late Middle Ages. The wool was shipped over to the Netherlands and turned into tapestry and other cloth.

Later Ferdinand and Isabel of Spain tried to emulate this, causing the de-forestation of Castille (la Mancha). An ecologic disaster.

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

We also have what is called a "south west" and other pieces of clothing to cover us up. These are mostly for the high seas.

Probably an umbrella would be OK for Leeds, but perhaps not for the moors.

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

Think Captains courageous ;=)

Grandmère Mimi said...

What about a cheap plastic poncho? I could borrow Grandpère's camouflage poncho that he uses for hunting.

Göran Koch-Swahne said...

If it's not too windy ;=)

Erp said...

The National Trust doesn't have museums as museums but some of the houses have art collections and some have connections to artists. A few years ago I went to Flatford in Suffolk which was where Constable lived. Got a tour by a art student who pointed out some of the surrounding area that Constable used in his paintings.


Fountains Abbey and Mount Grace Priory are National Trust.

You can search for church on the site and see what else is there.

kishnevi said...

Took me a bit longer to get this up, but here's some pictures of York I took on my one solitary trip to England. It's on my LJ account.
http://kishnevi.livejournal.com/46525.html#cutid1
I went on one of those package tours which claim to show you the highlights of England and Scotland in a week and a half. I call it the 'there was Stonehenge' type of tour.

Song in my Heart said...

Grandmère Mimi,

I would very much like to meet you and have e-mailed Doorman-Priest as instructed in the post you mentioned.

As I work a full day most Sundays and am also studying full time, I do have to be very mindful of keeping Saturdays as a day for resting. Sometimes this means inter-city travel is just impossible. But I will see how I am feeling nearer the time.

Grandmère Mimi said...

Erp, I'll check the Trust website for churches.

Kishnevi, I'll have a look at your pictures.

Song, I'd love to see you, but do what you think best.