Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Hello Flowers for Royal Wedding followers!  Yes, it's been way too long since the last post... I believe over two years.... is that a record? ... do I win a prize?

Next Question, do you recognize the scene above?  If you don't, then you weren't watching closely to the royal wedding coverage in April of 2011.  Since my last blog post, we, that is my partner and I have traveled to London and Paris.  Definitely the trip of a lifetime, and we got to see all that we wanted to see in both beautiful cities.  Side trips included Windsor Castle and Versailles.  If you haven't been yet, do yourself a favor and go soon. 

Our tour was guided, somewhat.  We made sure to pic a touring company that left plenty of free time on the schedule so that we could insert our own walking tours.

Besides evening strolls on the Seine, sumptuous French cuisine, dazzling crown jewels and ancient castles and the grandest of cathedrals, Notre Dame de Paris, the most amazing part of the trip was the evening at Buckingham Palace. Please, if you go to London, do not pass up any change to take the tour of the palace.  My eternal gratitude to Stan for finding the special evening booking, and making all of the arrangements for our palace tour.  You really haven't lived until you have experienced the Queen's London home on a tour in the evening, with only 20 other guests and conclude with champagne and punch on the Bow Room terrace.  They really treated us like Kings/Queens.  Just so happened even more luck was had in that we visited the palace during the Diamond Jubilee year.  Most amazing inside the palace tour was the special exhibit of the Queen's personal diamond collection... including... wait for it, yes!  my favorite of all the Queen's headpieces, the George IV Diadem or, as I learned it is also referred to as the Hanoverian Tiara.  We were as up close and as personal as I could get with out leaving nose smudges on the glass cases.  It was a dream come true.

As this weren't enough to stop the heart of this royal wedding enthusiast, we went on to see, the next day, all of the crown jewels in the Tower of London.  Take my advice and visit London just as the summer season is ending and the lines will not be so long.  Viewing the coronation pieces were entrancing... we took four turns on the conveyor belt and waited several turns to get up close to the case containing the Imperial State Crown.... all very much worth the wait.

London also had us visit Kensington Palace, Windsor Castle, St. Paul's Cathedral (I had to do my Diana Walk to the Altar!) St. Ethedrada's, Spencer House, and of course the Abbey. 

I could go on and on about each minute and hour of our journey, but I'll save more for later.  Thank you to my best friend and partner, Stan, for planning and executing this vacation of a lifetime! And thanks to my best sister-in-law, Colleen, for urging me to get back to blogging.

... and some more photos from our London visit...

Royal Wedding Tid-Bit of the day.... What about the button-hole? In Britain, they call it a Button-Hole, not a boutonniere... that little flower or floral cluster that traditionally is worn by the groom and groom's men, on the lapels of their jackets.  But, in most royal weddings, the groom and the best man are often in military uniform, thus, negating the use of a boutonniere or button-hole.  Prince Philip, wearing his Royal Navy uniform when he married Princess Elizabeth in 1947, of course wore no flower on his lapel.... no room for one with all those medals and insignias.  By the way, best wishes for a speedy recovery to HRH Prince Philip.

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