“Pussy cat, pussy cat, where have you been?
I’ve been to London to look at the Queen.” ~Old Nursery Rhyme
Day two, Saturday June 11th, we woke and made breakfast in the little kitchen at St. Agnes, and then headed to St. James’s Park to see the parade for the Queen’s 90th birthday celebration. She was actually born in April, but they always have the official parade in June instead.
For much of my life I have heard about the royal family. We had a book of the Royal Wedding I used to pour over growing up, and we would watch the video of it from time to time. So, to actually be in England and getting to see the Queen in person as she drove by in her carriage, and waved to the people was incredible.
As we walked through James’s Park looking for the Mall, where the Royal Family was to parade, a tour guide found us and we joined his group. He told us lots quantities of fascinating thing as we watched the parade, including about the tall black hats the soldiers wear who march about. Because he used to be a service man, he knew an incredible lot of such information. After the parade, he took us to Buckingham Palace to see the queen stand on the balcony while the airplanes flew over, then to St. James’s where we watched the changing of the guard, and last, by way of Pall Mall and all the gentleman’s clubs, to Trafalgar Square. There we ate lunch in front of the National Gallery, while looking at Nelson’s Monument.
Next, we walked to St. Martin-of-the-Fields, and went below to the crypt where there is a cafe and gift shop, and where we bought many presents for friends and family, and souvenirs for ourselves. On the way back to St. Agnes, we stopped at Tesco (a supermarket) and bought groceries, and cooked our dinner before we sang Mass, which was followed by a reception in our honor with copious amounts of cake and tea.