An afternoon with Stuart and Lisa
01.04.2007 - 01.04.2007 14 °C
I had a fantastic sleep last night! After sleeping in a twin bed for the past two weeks, I felt like a KING to be sleeping in a KING BED again. I woke up around 8:30am and began the now familiar practice of packing up my luggage for my next destination. It's usually not a big deal for me except that being gone for so long, I had to bring 3 suitcases plus a carry-on (hand luggage, they call it).
I had found a church online to attend this morning and I wasn't quite sure how long it would take me to walk so I skipped breakfast and started out around 10:00am. It couldn't have been a more lovely morning. A light breeze, sun shining... It was a bit of a long walk - maybe 1.5 - 2 miles. I arrived at 10:45am - early enough to have a cup of coffee and a breakfast sandwich. The church I attended was St. Mary's Church - the 11:00am Family Service. It was fantastic. Today was Palm Sunday and they were having a service with all the kids - and there were a TON of them! It was a bit like herding cats, though. The music team played some songs and then their children's leader led the kids (and adults) in some fun, audience participation, sing-along songs. The present church was built in 1821 but the previous buildings on site date back to the 1200's. It was expectedly chaotic with that number of kids in the service (several times the little ones figured out how to turn on the organ and added a unique musical interlude!!) but you could tell that it was a vibrant community. After church I talked with the music team and their children's pastor for a few minutes and then walked back to the hotel.
Stuart and his wife Lisa picked me up at 1:00pm from the hotel and we headed out for lunch. They took me to a great outdoor market area called Covent Garden. This market dates back to the 1630's and was the largest fruit and vegetable market in all of England. We visited some shops, had a beer at one pub, and ate lunch at another. I enjoyed watching the collection of street performers here as well - everything from statue actors to jugglers to musicians to limbo dancers!
Stuart and I were able to share our experiences in South Africa, how they compared and contrasted and I picked both of their brains for insight to life in the UK. They were great hosts and I really enjoyed my time with them. They were nice enough to give me a lift to Crawley on their way home where I'll settle in for the next 4 nights.