07.17 | Sometimes, the only way to catch an uncatchable woman is to offer her a wedding ring. (Ed Bloom)

Most men, they’ll tell you a story straight through. It won’t be complicated, but it won’t be interesting either. (Ed Bloom, Big Fish)

(written while in London, July 18, 2006)

OK. So if I said that we have walked the whole of London, you’d think that I was exaggerating, but it’s NOT an exaggeration AT ALL. On Saturday, when we arrived, our FREAKING awesome host, Neil, (pictures to follow when we’re home), picked Robert and I up from the aiport and took us to his great home in Sutton (which is on the southwest side of London). After meeting he and his wife Clare’s children (Oscar, Callum, and Elspeth), we had a FAN-TAS-TIC meal with them, and then believe it or not, stayed up until one in the morning and played board games! Halfway around the world and what do we do? The SAME thing we’d do at home with our friends! It was a great way to be with Robert again after so long and begin our stay in London.

On Sunday, we went to church at the Vineyard Sutton, where we heard yet another Pastor Jason talk about SLOWing down and enjoying life. After that, back to the house for what might just have been the most FAN-TAS-TIC cookout ever. We hung around with folks from at least three countries while gnoshing on some great food, drinks and games (again, pictures to follow, and well, the games might have been more Robert than me)…and then headed off to meet London.
I don’t know what to say except that the city of London itself played our host and that the highlight of the evening was to be the promised highlight of my entire trip to London: Queen Mary’s Garden (I’ll tell you more about the other sights and sounds in another post).

Robert had mentioned this garden when we first met, and said that people in C’bus compared the Whetstone Roses to it! so of course, I had to see how completely ridiculous that was. We trekked across London on tube, bus, train, and foot for what felt like hours to find this garden, knowing full well that the payoff would be worth it, only to get there just at twilight (optimum viewing time as Robert said)…took four steps into the park, found out that the park was closing and that we would have to leave! ARGH!!!! UGH!!!! At the point, we had to leave this park we’d come so far to see, and of course, we hadn’t eaten, so we went to look for dinner, but we couldn’t decide on anything, so after hours of searching for some sustinence, we decided that we just needed to go home, back to Sutton, and we did, rolling into town around midnight. I was SO tired I could hardly move.

The next day, we repeated the entire thing, only we started earlier in the day and packed MORE into the day! There was much MORE to see in London than we’d seen the day before! More to DO! And it was great! Only this time, towards the end of the day, we made a point to head towards the park earlier so that we could get in before it closed. It’s a good thing, too.

Because apparently that’s where Robert had planned to propose the entire time…

London Photos
The story of the ring…

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