June 20, 2013

Wednesday 19th - Stevenage

After usual hot buffet breakfast, made our way to kings cross station for our 20 minute ride to Stevenage. 20 minutes! The trains are so fast here, when they zoom past it's actually frightening. 
Stevenage is quaint and beautiful and very English. The main town is well populated and busy with locals, whereas the outlying village of Bennington is one-car width roads with overgrown hedges on either side and wild flowers and BUNNIES AND SQUIRRELS! Breathe. 
We visited the church my grandmother and her family attended, saw where they grew up (all 14 children together) and the chapel where my grandmother (a Draper) married my grandfather Cyril. I never really though about where my name came from before my father. I had never known my grandfather Cyril. 
Back in Stevenage, I visited my grandmother. She had just returned to her flat after weeks in hospital and then rehabilitation after falling and breaking her hip. The poor thing. She's tough though. Determined to do things herself, though she has support in place. Saw a picture of her with Cyril on their wedding day. She made the gown herself from parachute silk. I had never seen her so young - she didn't look anything like my grandmother today, and yet she looked almost exactly the same. Took some presents from Australia for her to add to the growing number of kangaroo and koala adorned ornaments around her home. 

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