No massive party yesterday, no excessive eating and drinking, no hangover. So we got up early and went to Richmond Park. This is one of London’s largest parks and is a designated nature reserve, with a herd of deer, and many parakeets, though the latter are newcomers.
This is the so-called Adam’s Pond. There were many family groups out with dogs and children, and new scooters, and bikes. People were picnicking with flasks of mulled wine and Christmas Day leftovers. Quite a few of the flat cap and Hunter wellies brigade: south Londoners will know what I mean. One new experience: the toilets are accessed by using a contactless bank card deducting 20p. I have to say I find this a shade ludicrous, could they not allow us free use? It is after all a Royal Park and I am sure Her Majesty could afford to be generous.
I thought you might be interested to see my personalised OS map. It really is very clever.
A proper OS Explorer map with Coulsdon at the centre, to enable me to discover lots of lockdown walks in the vicinity.
For some reason we were talking about turns of phrase which refer to old currency, probably deriving from the above experience of public toilets: to spend a penny. And wondered how long it will be before the younger generation say, what on earth are you talking about. “I don’t care tuppence”, “I can turn the car on a sixpence”, “He’s worth a bob or two”, “a penny-farthing bicycle”. The Kenyan currency is shillings, and it always brought me up short when they would say that something cost a couple of bob. They had absorbed the currency and also the slang.
I think my niece wins the award for the most creative Christmas card. It is a very simple and effective idea, on brown paper.
And if you have run out of things to do, with two more free days ahead, I commend to you the King William quiz, published every year on Christmas Eve in The Guardian. It is challenging, to say the least. Scroll down here for this year’s Good luck!