Always an Anglophile

Our Memoir Writing Group

This morning it’s time for my memoir meeting so I wrote this little memoir called,
“Always an Anglophile” by Amy Zents

Growing up in Canada in the 1960s Queen Elizabeth’s regal picture adorned the walls of most public buildings, including my elementary classroom at Sprucecourt school in Toronto Ontario.
The United Kingdom, and especially England always fascinated me.
In 2011 my husband and I finally got a chance to go to England. We stayed in a lovely hotel in Russell square. Every morning we had hot tea and delicious bowls of oatmeal, along with hard boiled eggs to buck us up to face the cold November gales blowing hard in London. I couldn’t tell you how cold that wind was, but it was surprisingly cold!
One of the 1st places we visited was the Black Tower also known as the “Bloody Tower,” where the corpses of many innocent and executed people were buried.
The beefeater told us the story about Lady Jane Gray who was only 17, who ruled for a few days and then got her head chopped off.
We saw all the torture instruments as well as the prison cells and the grounds where the black crows like to fly.
Henry VIII and his huge weapons armory and arsenal was incredible as were the crown jewels.
Looking at the royal lineage testified to the reason there was so much fratricide and infantacide in the royal family as many grasped to be king or queen.
We went to Harrod’s and had afternoon tea there. It is a very beautiful expensive store gleaming with the finest things. We went down the escalator to see the memorial to Princesd Diana and Dodi Fayed.
After taking a train to Stratford we boarded a Double Decker bus to take us to Anne Hathaway’s cottage where Shakespeare lived.
After touring the home and grounds we left to go back to the city of Stratford on Avon to see a play called, “The Heart of Robin hood.”
We were the only 2 passengers on top of the open-air double-decker bus. With cheap plastic red headphones in each ear, we tried to listen to the tour commentator while going down the country roads at break neck speed!
We thought the driver must have been in a hurry to get to the pub!
After the play, it was late. We were the only people in the train station waiting for the train back to London. It was strangely quiet. Then another couple arrived later on and we watched them necking on a bench until the train arrived.
There are many fine tourist stops in London including the Sherlock Holmes museum and the Royal museum not to mention the beautiful Royal Albert hall where we went to hear a concert with the London Symphony.
Because I was so enamored with Charles Dickens at that time and reading all his books I did find it a great thrill to go to his house on Doughty street and examine memorabilia Including the desk he used to write the book “Great expectations.” Sadly, the famous painting I was hoping to see called, “The Dream,” featuring Pickwick, Little Doritt, David Copperfield and all the characters from his novels, was on loan to the Royal Museum and sitting in storage for when they put out their big 200th anniversary exhibit on Charles Dickens.
From the Royal Gallery to Buckingham palace,
from Hyde Park to the London Eye we walked or took a black cab, or the London Tube. We went so many places in so little time.
My husband’s thrill was the Royal Science Museum. Guides took us on a backstairs tour to see the many discoveries and actual writings on specimen bottles of Charles Darwin when he visited the Galapogos Islands.
Yes England was great and I guess I will always be an Anglophile.

CD was born on 2/7/1812