29 years ago…

… today since our first kiss at a train station as we parted after a long night and morning out on the town together. I found an old grainy picture taken not long after in the not very romantic hallway of said train station…

… and I’m still as happy with the man as I am in this picture. When I look at the picture it feels like we were babies then, even though I was 21 and Mr Esther was 20 and we felt quite mature and grown up at the time. Train station kisses are good omens for happily ever after, I guess…

… they were for John and Margaret in North and South and they were for Mr Esther and myself. 🙂

Diamond anniversary

On September 16th, 1960 (60 years ago today) my parents got married.

Their marriage has always been a real role model for me. Although they were very different as people, they were true partners in everything, always proud of the other, lifting each other up, encouraging the other in separate and common endeavors, each person allowed to be themselves within their union. Even as a youngster I always thought that if I ever marry, that is the kind of marriage I would aspire to. If I couldn’t have that then I would rather be alone and to this day I still feel that way. I wanted be in love with my best friend through thick and thin, I wanted to be able to completely show myself and be accepted for who I am just as I would want to be able to accept the other completely for who they are, just like my parents did, warts and all, with open lines of communication and no taboos between us. I am lucky I found someone like that. I am ever grateful to my parents for showing me that such a partnership is possible and that I didn’t need to settle for anything less.

I wish papa were still with us to celebrate this day. At least the sun is shining today, just like it did on her wedding day my mother told me this morning on the phone.

(A rose in the sunshine in our back garden today)

Happy diamond anniversary to my beloved parents!

21 years

Mr Esther and I got married 21 years ago today…

… and he’s still my favourite person in the world!

On to at least another 21 years! ❤️

20 years

We got married on July 26th 1999…

… and 20 years later on July 26th 2019 we still love being together!

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We’re old and fat now but happy. 🙂

Esther in Leicester

I kinda like the alliteration of that. 🙂

So, yesterday was Leicester(shire) day with the family and I can tell you Leicester really is all about Richard III. For me personally, it was all about Richard Armitage as well of course.

Leicester is a little over an hour away from our campsite. We were late getting away in the morning and then got lost on the way in Kettering, looking for a gas station and then for a place to use the bathroom (the gas station didn’t have that, they said), so by the time we finally got to Bosworth it was after 1 pm! Bosworth is the place where Richard III was killed on August 22nd, 1485 in battle against Henry Tudor. There’s a museum but we didn’t take time to visit that, we just traipsed over the battlefield site and monument…

By the way, even the bathrooms at the Bosworth site are Armitage Shanks. 🙂 I also very much liked a chain mail necklace I saw, but as I don’t wear militaria (and to what occasion would I even wear such a necklace?) I decided against buying it.

After Bosworth we drove to Leicester but before we got there, we made sure we passed through the village of Huncote first. It is well-known to Richard Armitage fans that he grew up there, so naturally, as we were near anyhow, I thought it might be fun to drive through it. We didn’t get out or anything, just drove through and got a very quick and fleeting impression of the village.

There’s a pub…

… and a church and a village green…

… and I saw a sign to the primary school but was too late to photograph it (we didn’t have the time to drive to it either). So, the impression was fleeting but it looked like a lovely village in the middle of a very green countryside. You can hardly imagine that it’s so near to a big city. Within five minutes, however, you find yourself driving into the outskirts of Leicester, which is a very busy city…

At the request of my son we drove by Leicester City football stadium…

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The parts of the city that we drove through didn’t look great until we got to the city center. After we parked, we walked into the center and this was the first part we saw…

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One of the buildings is the Radio BBC Leicester building, which immediately made me think of Richard Armitage again as he has been interviewed for Radio BBC Leicester before.

In fact, over on Richard Armitage Central there is a link to an interview where Richard speaks about Richard III on BBC Radio Leicester! Very fitting with our visit there yesterday!

We of course also visited the cathedral which is where Richard III is now buried. The black embroidered cover was used during his reburial procession and ceremony.

Some more impressions of the very nice looking center of Leicester…

We also went shopping there, it’s a very good place for shopping. There’s a huge mall right there in the center, good for year-round all-season shopping. It also had this store:

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In Colchester I had come across Mr. Darcy, here in Richard-Armitage-city I fittingly came across Mr. Thornton. 🙂 Is it a coincidence that both are sweets / chocolate shops?

For all its Richard-ness (the Third and Armitage), Leicester was also the city where Mr Esther and I celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary yesterday! For that alone, it will remain a bit of an extra special place. My son took a few pictures of us and the four of us had dinner in an old bank building that is now a grill restaurant with a very nice ambiance.

Yes, Esther very much enjoyed being in Leicester!