To Capture the Castle (#133)

Once upon a time, the handsomest king in Europe (i.e., the only one without the Habsburg jaw) married the most beautiful woman in his court. On their honeymoon, they stayed at a charming castle. Then they lived happily ever after.

Nah, just kidding. The King was Henry VIII. You know this didn’t have a happy ending.

Unless you’re an American, in which case you’re hazy on all history before 1776. Continue reading To Capture the Castle (#133)

10 Tips For Driving on the Wrong Side of the Road (#132)

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Andy’s view of a white-knuckled American. Before he fell asleep.

After four days in London, Andy and I headed off into the countryside. We battled over the mode of transportation. Andy was pro-car. I was pro-train. Andy won with a quote from Hertz of approximately 25 pounds per day for a car rental.

The cheapest rental cars in England are manual transmission. And yes, that’s what was on our reservation.

I learned to drive on a stick shift. Andy did not. Andy learned to drive a stick shift on his Mustang Cobra when he was twenty-six, because that’s the car he really wanted and it doesn’t come in automatic.

Andy went through two transmissions and three clutches by the time we were married.

Andy’s night vision is also terrible. He refuses to admit this, but I’ve got three cyclists, two raccoons, one possum, a deer, and a feral cat who owe their lives to me screaming “Look out!” after 10 PM. Sadly, I wasn’t there to save the pole. Continue reading 10 Tips For Driving on the Wrong Side of the Road (#132)

London Diary: Day One (#130)

T-12 hours: I check the forecast for London:LondonForecast

So much for, “Oh, to be in England now that April’s there…” But as the Vacation Rain Goddess, I am unsurprised.

[22 hours later]

Our 777 approaches Heathrow. Then passes Heathrow, circling London and heading back east to the runway. It’s sweet that the pilots like to give incoming tourists a view…of the RAIN CLOUDS. Almost like they’re saying, “Here’s a preview! Next time, when you think British vacation, think British Virgin Islands, you bloody fool.” Continue reading London Diary: Day One (#130)

16 Things Americans Oughta Know Before Landing in London (#129)

When Andy and I went to London earlier this month, I thought I was prepared.

Turns out, Dr. Who, Top Gear, Graham Norton, Inspector Lewis, and Downton Abbey may leave gaping holes in your education that authors P.D. James, Helen Simonson, and Elizabeth George cannot quite fill.

The internet doesn’t exactly do London justice, either. But for those of you who are either looking to laugh at the clueless Americans or hoping to visit London and NOT look like clueless Americans, I’ve made this handy list: Continue reading 16 Things Americans Oughta Know Before Landing in London (#129)

London Calling (#128)

IMG_6884Those readers who follow me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram know that Andy and I recently took a trip to Great Britain.

Those readers who don’t follow me on social media, well, you should. I have live action videos on everything from the Whitehall Horse Guards to Andy’s ongoing battle with the neighborhood squirrels.

Andy and I haven’t had a real vacation since our honeymoon. That was years ago. No, I’m not telling you how many, but remember, this is a memoir blog. It could be 3 years ago, it could be fifty! (It’s not fifty.) Continue reading London Calling (#128)