Friday, June 13, 2008
In England, a sentimental journey to the village where I grew up in Essex. Sadly, Essex has a reputation a bit like New Jersey in the US, when in fact it is rather wonderful.
We lived in a gamekeeper's cottage on a huge estate and used to play in the woods constantly.
This park is the setting for a children's story, Jane in Winter, that I've just finished.
This is a scary blasted oak........
......and a magical tree stump.
When I was a child, Thorndon Hall was derelict and the fountain did not play. Once the center part of the hall went up in flames at night. Very dramatic.
Flowers in St.Nicholas Churchyard in Ingrave............
.........and more of the churchyard where I spent many happy hours reading the gravestones.......
The pond in Herongate where we used to feed the ducks. The Friary in the background.
And Mrs.Dickerson's cottage next to the Boar's Head. We used to call Mrs. Dickerson "The Old Lady with no stockings" - but, obviously, never to her face. It used to be rather organic looking . Now it has been 'improved'.
The requisite number of ducks which now seem to have a diet of potato crisps - and continue to thrive.
In the distance, across the flat Essex countryside, Heron Hall, built long ago by the Tyrell family, where my friend Caroline lived.
The house is partially surrounded by a moat where who knows what lurked......