Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Here and there and back again

After my birthday, the next thing was heading out for a holiday. This year my husband and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary on the 1st of August. So we took a break to Guernsey in the Channel Islands.
I let my husband arrange things - it was so nice not to have to make any decisions after such a busy year. So, it was a big surprise to find we were to stay in a posh hotel! I think the Queen has even stayed there!

We had separate room with a settee and another TV - not sure what it was meant for, but we used it for the suitcase. :-p

We had a very lovely relaxed time. Went to a Chamber concert in a church one night. We took a day trip to Herm with a tour of the Gardens there.
A very peaceful place...we sat on the beach and read books for the afternoon!

My husband offered to buy me a nice outfit for the big day. (I think after I panicked on the first night when I realised the hotel was so posh and I hadn't brought much by way of posh clothes!) We had the Maitre D' take our photo. Another couple had an anniversary, too. We saw them asking a waitress to take their photo. But I didn't catch what the year was and my husband insisted I didn't speak to them. (That was fine, I know he isn't keen on speaking to complete strangers!)

Another day we took another ferry, this time to Sark. No automobiles allowed. Only tractors. So we had an interesting ride round the island by horse and cart. It happened to be a day the horse, called George, was feeling particularly lazy. At one point a lady on a mobility scooter overtook us on the road! We all had a good laugh at that! However, it was nice to be so laid back and look at the scenery.

On a few other days we visited Castle Cornet on Guernsey,
Sarnia Arts and Crafts Club Exhibition at Elizabeth college,
as well as a Museum with a Costume section, the Freesia Centre where I bought my husband a selection of bulbs for his garden,
the Guernsey Tapestries - done for the Millenium, and a WWII Occupation Museum. The Channel Islands were the only part of Great Britain that were taken by the Germans in the war.
The conditions were dreadful and the realization of the oppression islanders went through really hit home for me when I saw posters like these.

On the last day, we went to the home which belonged to Victor Hugo when he was exiled. He had gone to Belgium after speaking out against Napoleon III. Then he had to go to Jersey, where he his views about Queen Victoria's acceptance of Napoleon got him into further trouble. When he was sent to Guernsey, he had money from the sale of his Collection of Poems - Contemplations. So, he purchased Hauteville House. And now owning property, he could not be exiled again! All together he was 19 years in exile.

It is very hard to describe Hugo's house. It is just a bit OTT and rather strange altogether. I guess he was rather theatrical in his life, not just in his ability to write books like Hunchback of Notre Dame and Les Miserable. There was a hall/storeroom decorated with plates
- even on the ceiling!
The dining room had a tile surround, surrounded by more tiles, for the fireplace.
All Walls and Ceilings were covered with fabric
or tapestries...some in rather unusual ways.
At the top of the house was his studio - a novel idea for those days when servant's quarters were usually in those positions. He had a sort of conservatory where he was able to see the Sea, which fascinated him, and where he would pace back and forth writing as he walked.

We just managed a short look at Fort Grey before heading to the airport.

It was a very lovely time just to be together and enjoy a leisurely pace of life.

...and since I have been home I have been right out straight on finishing the work to send off for the Stretching Art exhibition at PNQE - Pennsylvania National Quilt Exposition. I will show more of that another day.

1 comment:

Linda M said...

I'm so glad you had such a wonderful trip.