Looking back over the Tudor knot gardens towards the back of Hampton Court.
Cozy, don't you think?
Today, I returned to Hampton Court. Isn't it amazing what lots and lots of money can do! This palace is just ridiculously beautiful. I went to Hampton Court last summer on a Saturday for a highly publicized celebration on Henry the Eighth's wedding to Anne Bolyen. It was great and I thoroughly enjoyed it, but there were easily a thousand people there that day. I was sure that I didn't get to see everything. So, I decided to go back on a weekday when nothing else was scheduled. This year it was a completely different experience. There were maybe a hundred people there. The docents were friendly and talkative. I could think and check off each part of the palace as I saw them. I like to be an organized tourist. I even got to see a photographer or journalist taking detailed pictures of some of the gorgoyles in the palace.
|One of the many cherry trees in the orchard. Each magpie staked a claim |
to his own personal tree and defended that territory with the vigor of
a Jack Russell terrier!
I ended my tour in the Tiltyard cafe. Yes, even the Royal Palaces are not above a little tourism. I got some short bread which was O.K. I can make better. But I also got a slice of Victoria Sponge Cake! Wow! It was delish. I thought sponge cake was tasteless yellow cake with big holes in it. Wrong! It was tasty and light textured with a little sugar coating on the top. It had a slight lemony taste to it. They split the cake and spread a layer of jam and English custard in between the layers. They put a little whip cream and powdered sugar on top. Wonderful! I really don't know why people complain about English food. The puddings are so good, they make your eyes roll back in your head.
Tomorrow I'm taking a tour of The Houses of Parliament. That should be interesting. Hope everyone is well!