This glorious weekend continues with yet another beautiful spring day. In fact, it was more like a warm summers day. Chloe, Karl and the children came down from London and we managed to have lunch in the garden- me, in the wheelchair. The children enjoyed tearing around the garden after being restricted by their little patch of grass in London. Never stopping to draw breath, they played cricket, croquet, table tennis and pool. Very few squabbles and a lot of laughing and enjoyment. It was lovely to see them, obviously getting bigger every time I see them and a little more grown-up. I must admit, from my point of view, it was great to be outside in the fresh air. I sat quietly watching them all playing croquet silently wishing I was able to join as I always enjoyed the game in the past.
The evidence of spring and early summer are at last with us. Last weekend was the Oxford and Cambridge boat race (sadly Cambridge were beaten by what seemed to be a far fitter, Oxford crew) and this weekend. it was the Grand National (Watched avidly by my son-in-law, Karl, who is somewhat of an aficionado when it comes to the nags-and true to form to backed the winner! I’m pleased to say I came very close second and made a few bob. All the rest of the family who were also watching and have placed some very modest debts on horses, a new absolutely nothing about other than their names appealed, all lost their money! Never mind, it’s only once a year)
Later in the afternoon son Miles and Kimberly arrived for tea with their friends from Philadelphia, Hilary and Francis. Hilary is Kimberly’s best friend and was her maid of honour at their wedding. Miles and Kimberly had taken their friends to visit Magdelene, his old College at Cambridge and while they were there. they visited a number of the other colleges before coming on to see us.. It was really nice to get to know them both a little better as on the day of the wedding. they were all pretty well occupied and we didn’t have much of a chance to get to know them.. They are a lovely couple. They come from Philadelphia, which holds happy memories for me during the days I was P/A to, the chairman of The English Property Co . I remember being sent to Philadelphia, in the early 60′s, to prepare a feasibility study on a development site that stretched from the bicentennial site, across the rail tracks to the Uris Building, in the middle of town. A massive development in those days, estimated to cost $225 million and I was expected to prepare a feasibility study within three days-sheer lunacy. Of course, I did it but what value it was, heaven knows. Obviously, the chief executive , David Llewellyn, shared my reservation. He took one look at it and dropped it straight in the wastepaper basket. Such were the heady days of the 60s property boom.
It was wonderful to have my whole family around me. on such a beautiful day and in particular to see Kimberly, who doesn’t manage to get down too often and characteristically, generously bought me a wonderful box of Turkish delight, which is one of my favourites. ‘My lovely’went about her business quietly and without fuss, coping wonderfully, as usual.
The Karl and children went home after tea as is the tricky for ‘my lovely’to have so many people to stay these days when she has so much to do for me. However, darling. Chloe stayed overnight to give me a hand with one or two things following morning. So for me the day was an embarrassment of riches.