Monday, September 29, 2014

Eating Gluten Free In England- The Terrace-Eastbourne/ Pizza Express- London

Mirror, mirror on the wall...who's the shortest woman of all?  HA!

When you have celiac disease like my husband Richard does, you have to do a bit of investigation for a gluten free restaurant!  His wife does anyway!   I found a really nice place in Eastbourne....The Terrace Restaurant  It is a hidden gem tucked away on a quiet street yet it is just around the corner from the Arndale Center, the train station and the bus pick-up area.  The Terrace is just down the street from the Eastbourne Tourist Information Center on a street that is surrounded by the offices of solicitors (lawyers!...you know that from watching British TV, right?)

They have a nice outdoor area and I suppose that is why they named it  THE TERRACE! It was too hot to sit outside the day that we were there but I know that does not stop English folks! They sit in the sun no matter what...mad dogs and Englishmen, you know.  Anyway, the owner was kind enough to turn on the AC for us even though we didn't ask her for it.   It was meticulously clean and tidy and it was a pleasure to sit inside the bright cheerful room and rest after we had walked along the Eastbourne seafront!


Richard had a jacket potato with cheese.  Funny, they call it a jacket potato where we would say a baked potato.  I say...call it anything you like, just make sure it has some good English cheddar on it!!!  And the English cheddar is a creamy white color, not orange at all...American cheddar has coloring added to it.  Just so you know!  (Please, American cheddar, don't be mad at me...you know I love you too...but you must know that the English cheddar is really, really good.)

The Terrace Restaurant's owners, make their own bread, so you might guess that I enjoyed a sandwich there!  I do NOT have to eat gluten free you see, so you can bet that I really like good home made bread!  We met the husband and wife team, Anne and Nigel , who own and manage the Terrace Restaurant and they could not have been more welcoming and accommodating.  They did not pay me to tell you this and I did not receive any compensation.  This restaurant should be enjoyed by anyone, NOT just for those on a gluten free diet but I was happy that I found a place that understood the gluten free diet and I didn't have to worry about the food that my husband had there!  Anne also told me that they even have some gluten free bread too but since it was frozen, Richard decided to go with the jacket potato!

If you ever get to Eastbourne, go to the Terrace Restaurant...and tell them Georgia Girl With An English Heart sent you!  Be sure and sit in that same seat by the window and get your photo made!
(Or else get your photo made in that same mirror and see if I truly AM the shortest woman in the world! HA!)

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Now, we also enjoyed the meals in London, and we had to make sure that for Richard the meals were gluten free!
 
 
There are several of these Pizza Express locations in London...This one is on Coptic Street in London, just around the corner from the British Museum. (I think I read it was their SECOND location and they are very proud of it!)  It was in a former dairy and you can still see the original tile when you walk to the Ladies Room! (Except you have to say "toilets" in England...if you say BATHROOM over there, folks will laugh at you, I promise!)
OH! and look closely at the light fixtures in the above photo...they are supposed to be milk bottles, don't you love it?
This pizza was really tasty AND it had a gluten free crust! We were hungry, we had walked miles around London!
And Richard even enjoyed a gluten free beer!  I always try for the sweet fruity drinks when I am in England.  I also liked something called "Juicy Water" that I bought for the train journey and I enjoyed a drink called "Rio" when I was at the seafront...fond memories of sipping a cool drink on some very warm days!
 
Now, how did I find these restaurants that catered to someone on a gluten free diet?  I typed in "Gluten free restaurants in London and Eastbourne" in a search engine.    Easy peasy!
Any restaurant that takes the time to let me know that my husband can eat there goes way up on my list of restaurants!  Thank you, Anne & Nigel in Eastbourne and also the owners of the Pizza Express Restaurants...goodness, after we ate at this one on Coptic Street, we saw them all over London!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

England- By The Sea

Next impression of England: the sea!

In one of the tourist books I read this:  "In England, you are never more than about 70 miles from the sea".   Now, I have no idea if that is strictly correct, nor do I care! All I know is that when we are visiting Eastbourne, we are only about one mile from it!


 
Joy!  That is what I felt wading at the edge of the sea along the sand...the tide was out, so I was not walking on the pebbles, they were beside me!  And I love the pebbles too, I love to look at all the different shapes and to pick one up and feel the smoothness of the rock...I know people love sand, but I think the pebbles are just gorgeous.  There is such color and variety: I could spend hours looking at them...and I do!
More joy!  I have only a tiny bit of my ice cream cone here...I am pointing to the flavor that I had just purchased from this ice cream kiosk....and that is what the shop was called..."The Kiosk"!  I loved talking to the young man who worked here.  He told me he is going to New York City for New Year's Eve...and I promised to look for him on TV! Hey! It could happen! You never know...

 This ice cream was simply divine...it was "Honeycomb and Caramel", in case you can't see the words!  We also had this ice cream at my in-laws - with Richard's birthday cake! (They got theirs from Marks & Spencer...absolutely delicious!)

 
I read that the Pier will partially reopen this weekend, but it was completely closed while we were there.  You can see the burnt out skeleton below...




In the photo above, you might think that those are two roads beside the sea...but they are both walkways, and it extends for miles along the seafront! I think I read that at one time, the upper class walked on the higher level while those in the lower classes walked on that lowest level. (AND further towards the end at Holywell, there are THREE levels!)  This used to be called "The Promenade".  That word might not be used anymore, it might sound too old fashioned, too Victorian for these modern times. I think we should bring back good words like "promenade"!

promenade
[ ˌpräməˈnād, -ˈnäd ]

noun

  1. a paved public walk, typically one along a waterfront at a resort.

Now, these lovely walks are free and available for everyone!  And you all know how much we love to walk!

 Once you come to the end of this...why, you just walk up beside the main road and THEN...you climb straight up a gigantic hill (over the downs) and climb up to Beachy Head...but that will have to be for another post!
(At this rate, I will finish my England trip for you by about 2017!)  

Thursday, September 25, 2014

England's Flowers In September


In my luggage, I made sure that I took plenty of long sleeve shirts and an umbrella for our trip to England.  I shouldn't have bothered.  The weather was sunny and dry but the daytime highs were not TOO high.  It was perfect walking weather.  And the flowers!  It was truly the end of summer there and the flowers were beautiful.

So, my very first impression of England in September was of flowers...


The dahlias in this front garden were incredible!

 

The flower beds along the Eastbourne seafront are called The Carpet Gardens and they were amazing!  I looked at an open top bus as it was stopped in traffic and all were enjoying the view of the flowers.  One of the young women on the bus gave me the sweetest smile, both of us saying a lot in our smiles- our joy of the day viewing this lovely sight! 

"There is just one moon and one golden sun,
And a smile means friendship to everyone,
Though the mountains are wide and the oceans are wide,
It's a small world after all".      Robert and Richard Sherman

There were quite a few times on this trip, I actually said those words, "It's a small world".

 
 
 
The Carpet Gardens- Eastbourne
 

 
We saw black-eyed susans in a few gardens but the BEST ones were at the home of Richard's parents!  Venus de Milo blew over once in a heavy wind, so Peter (my wonderful father-in-law!) tied some garden twine around her waist and told her to hang on! 


The hydrangeas were beautiful.  I love this flower.  Most of them in Georgia bloom in June and they are almost always blue.  In England, they are almost always pink and they actually become like dry flowers as they are on the stalk, if you see what I mean.  They were in so many gardens! I loved them.   Look at these white flowers!  Not sure what they are, but I love how they look in this garden.

There were some incredible hanging baskets of flowers in Eastbourne and in London and I will share those with you in another post.  Richard took all of these photos in this post and I hope you have enjoyed our first impressions of England - the flowers!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

In England's Green & Pleasant Land



And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England's mountains green:
And was the holy Lamb of God,
On England's pleasant pastures seen!

And did the Countenance Divine,
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here,
Among these dark Satanic Mills?

Bring me my Bow of burning gold;
Bring me my Arrows of desire:
Bring me my Spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire!

I will not cease from Mental Fight,
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand:
Till we have built Jerusalem,
In England's green & pleasant Land


This poem by William Blake set to music by Parry was inspired by the story that a young Jesus accompanied by Joseph of Arimathea travelled to what is now England.  The legend is from a idea in the Book of Revelation and describing a Second Coming where Jesus establishes a new Jerusalem, a metaphor for Heaven.  The song is so well loved that it is called the "unofficial" anthem of England.



Remember that I told you I would be away for a few weeks and would be very busy? Richard and I were in England! We had a wonderful time and the weather was glorious! Lots to tell you about and you know that Richard took lots of photos! I was happy that I was able to see The Last Night of the Proms on the "telly".  
Didn't see all of it, but we saw the last part, with the songs from Mary Poppins and all the Last Night of the Proms favorites...Jerusalem, Land of Hope and Glory, and Rule Britannia...which, by the way, I kept humming the whole time I was there!)
 
I love the song "Jerusalem".  As an American, I didn't know it until I first heard it in the 80's from the film "Chariots of Fire" (which is one of my FAVORITE films of all time,  I truly love it.)
The director of the movie was going to name it "Running" until he heard this song from another one of my favorite TV shows of all time, "Songs of Praise".  
Look what I found here, from Wikipedia...showing William Blake's words written in his own hand and at the bottom he has written the words "Would to God that all the Lord's people were Prophets".  It is from the Bible, from the Book of Numbers. 
 
 

 




 
Of course, I have the video for you!  The conductor, Sakari Oramo, had such an infectious enthusiasm!  I hope that you enjoy this as much as I do!
 
 
 
More to come about England, I promise you.  Richard's photos are just stunning, just you wait until you see them!  Did we make it to London? Did I talk with everyone that I met about Louis Zamperini? What do you think?  :-)
 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Trust And Obey



Recently, we sang this hymn, "Trust And Obey" at our church.  I don't remember singing it before and I really liked it. (Anne Cruz, the organist at St. Simon's is probably shaking her head just now, but if I don't REMEMBER things, then they are brand new to me, right?) 
I love to look up the history behind hymns and I think this is a good one. 

In 1887, a young man new to the Christian faith stood to share his story. It soon became clear that he knew little of the Bible or of the Christian doctrine. In his closing remarks, he said something that really touched a chord with one of the audience and it was something along these lines..."I don't know the Bible that well and I am not quite sure...but I am going to trust and obey."  The listener was Daniel Towner who wrote those words down and then gave them to John Sammis who wrote lyrics. Daniel Towner then developed the music to go with the lyrics.  Of course, I have a video of the song for you! I really love this sung with an organ but I also like it with a guitar too!

I know I might come across as a know-it-all but of course, I hardly know anything and the things that I do know, I either forget or get them wrong...so maybe that is why this kind of song appeals to me...I am just going to trust and obey!

(This was just a very quick post, will be back again in full shortly. I trust that everyone is well and happy, will be talking with you all very soon!)

Stained Glass Window-St. Simon's Church-There is a soccer ball in memorial to a young man who died, can you spot it?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Sailing Alone Around The World



Somewhere beyond the sea
Somewhere waiting for me
My lover stands on golden sands
And watches the ships that go sailing.


Doubtful that you will ever find me in a sailboat but for some reason, I have a strange fascination with the sea.  I have written of my love for a book about sailing called "Sailing Alone Around The World" by Joshua Slocum.    You would never guess...Les from Prairie Horizons sent me a copy of her husband's book... it is an annotated copy of this book!
http://www.amazon.com/Annotated-Sailing-Alone-Around-World/dp/1574092758

THANK YOU to Les and Rod!  (And also thanks to  Nan who I believe told Les of my love for this book!)

There, I think I have a link on Amazon for you, but please feel free to buy it from any bookstore
or book shop in England!  The wonderful thing, Rod Scher (husband of Les, if you are still following me!) has great knowledge of the history of sailing and therefore gives you lots of facts alongside the story itself.  Not bragging, but I surprised myself at how much I already knew of this nautical and historical information! I learned a lot but still, I didn't think I would know ANYTHING! This is just from my reading, but then, I am getting on in years, so doggone it, I should be remembering something! 

The song "Somewhere Beyond The Sea" was a big hit for Bobby Darin in the late 50's...I just bet that Rod and all other sailors would know this song too! (And wanna-be sailors like me!)

This is just a quick post since, as I told you, not much time for a while, hope to be back with you soon...until then, keep an even keel!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Singletree/Swingletree From White Oak Tree



I was talking to my Dad recently about trees.  (Of course, I talk about trees, doesn't everyone?)
One of the trees that I really notice on our walks is a White Oak and I asked my Dad if he was familiar with it.
There are lots of White Oaks on this walk...Stone Mountain Park, Georgia.

 
It is a beautiful tree. You can tell it is a White Oak from the trunk.  As your eyes travel upwards, the trunk becomes more whitish and the bark almost looks as if it is peeling somewhat...that is the best way I know how to describe it.  Of course, as an oak, it has acorns and they are quite small and these small acorns are one of THE most prized food for white-tailed deer.   My Dad said that it is a good hard wood and that in farming, they used White Oak to make tool handles, posts and a singletree.... "A what?" , I asked him.  I had never heard that word before.  I looked it up...
(it amused my Dad because I didn't know what it was!)

The definition of a singletree is a bar between the pulling animal and the wagon or plow that balances the weight being pulled.

As Americans, we got this word from Britain, but somehow it was changed.  It is called "swingletree" there!  I find words very interesting.  It's easier to say singletree, isn't it?  When I told my Dad that this word really came from England, and that somehow we Americans changed it, he was tickled!  "Is that right! Well, I'll be!"

If any of you know anything about the origin of the word "swingletree/singletree", then let me know!
I only know how much I love the White Oak tree and I was happy to find out on a recent hike that it is one of the favorites of Ranger Robby Astrove from Arabia Mountain too!  So, YAY!  Park Rangers are my heroes!
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I will be quite busy for the next two weeks or so and will have limited time to visit all the blogs that I like to visit.  I KNOW, I can just hear all of you sobbing.... and wondering how you will be able to make it without my wise and oh so insightful comments.  Well, just hang in there, I'll be back in two shakes of a lamb's tail!  Yee-HAH!   Sorry, I was channeling a Wild West cowgirl there...take care! Love y'all from Georgia Girl With An English Heart!