Thursday, August 24, 2006
Get out of town!
Tuesday, my Kiwi friend Kate and I hopped on a train and headed out to Leeds Castle for a day of fun in the sun outside the confines of London. As you can see, the grounds around the castle are beautiful (although this photo doesn't nearly do it justice). When we got there, we found ourselves a snack bar and got some lunch to take and eat amongst the nature. Well, apparently nature was hungry for lunch too because these hideous looking velociraptors, oops, I mean black swans charged over and stood about 5 inches from our bench and waited patiently (or not so much actually) for us to throw 'em a bone so to speak. In retrospect, I should have taken a photo to illustrate just how close to us they were. It was totally freaking me out the whole time we were eating and I could barely concentrate on our conversation because they kept creeping closer and closer little by little. Then one of them backed up and took a major dump on the walkway. Cute.
So anyway, after lunch we took a tour of the castle which was really interesting. And interestingly enough, the most interesting thing was about the stinking rich and interesting lady who purchased the interesting castle in the 1920's as opposed to it's less interesting ancient royal history. Hmmm, interesting, no? Can you imagine being rich enough to purchase a castle in the English countryside? That's a whole different level of money. I mean, the family still owns it today and one of Lady Baillie's daughters actually lived there until her death in 2000. That must have been fun giving her address to credit card companies and stuff.
Credit card company lady: "Yes, I'll be happy to pull up your account ma'am. Could you please verify your address?"
Stinking rich lady: "Sure, that's Leeds Castle, Kent, England."
Credit card company lady: "Mmm-hmm, and what's the house number and post code please?"
Stinking rich lady: "Um, yeah, we're like the first castle on the right. Probably the only castle on the right actually."
Probably the most interesting part of the tour to me was Lady Baillie's dressing room and bathroom. I aspire to have a shoe closet one day. And hot boy-servants to put the shoes on my feet.
Love it. Soooo 20's art deco. It's like an F. Scott Fitzgerald novel come to life.