Featured Post

Peter Panned: The Peter Pan Statue in Kensington Park

Before my husband and I visited London in May of last year (2017) I spent Fridays taking a virtual walk of the city, sharing what I learned via my friend google in a weekly post called Above Ground on the London Underground. That’s when I first visited Peter Pan in Kensington Garden.
At the time Joy, fellow blogger and host of British Isles Friday commented that she found the Peter Pan statue difficult to photograph. After visiting the statue for myself, I can only say, No kidding! I couldn’t get a really good shot either. But I wonder, does the fault rest with the photographer or the subject?

J.M. Barrie commissioned the statue from Sir George Frampton and secretly had it installed in Kensington Park—without permission—in the middle of the night, as if Tinkerbell herself had flown it into place. 

According to the announcement J.M. Barrie himself had published in the Times  ...
“There is a surprise in store for the children who go to Kensington Gardens to feed the ducks in the Serpentine …

Bon Voyage: Our TransAtlantic Crossing

Over on Chapter1-Take1, I shared a French-dubbed trailer for the movie Brooklyn starring Saoirse Ronan. In the film, Ronan’s character, Eilis, emigrates from Ireland onboard an ocean liner in the 1950’s. That’s how they rolled in those days. Er, that’s how we rolled in those days. 

We came to North America on an ocean liner too, sailing across the Atlantic Ocean from Liverpool on the R.M.S. Sylvania in the middle of winter. It was during the last days of trans-Atlantic ocean crossings; the Sylvania was the final ship built by the Cunard Line before the whole world took to the skies, leaving ocean liners to the pleasure seekers and cruise goers. Unlike Brooklyn’s Eilis, who landed at Ellis Island in New York, we landed in Halifax, Nova Scotia. It was February 1960 and I was five. We’d already moved from England, where my brother and I were born, to Libya, then in ’57 to Turkey where my sister was born, and back to Libya. And now we were leaving the shores of Tripoli where winter days went down to the low 50’s, for Canada. If I thought I knew what cold was, I didn’t. 

That’s me wearing the scarf and the glasses with my leg hooked on the railing, with my mother and my little sister, Nancy, between us. My father would have taken the picture while my brother was likely off exploring the ship.Taking a look at my lightweight garb, the photo must have been taken in the early days of the ship’s passage, before it got really cold. 

I still have an old metal steamer trunk, the iconic Cunard line stickers on it, and the photo above, but few real memories from the trip. Except for one small snippet stuck in my head, like a stray earring lost in the lining of an old suitcase, useless without the other earring; a memory of my brother giving me a tour of what he’d discovered, opening a  door to reveal the empty movie theater in a deserted hallway we weren’t supposed to be in. Just our luck, he told me, the cinema was closed for the winter crossings. 

I texted my brother, confirming the name of the ship we sailed on. He told me Cormac McCarthy sailed on the Sylvania too, except he was going the opposite direction. McCarthy was taking his fellowship money from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and going to Ireland to rediscover his roots. McCarthy met his second wife, a dancer on the ship, on his 1965 crossing. A dancer? I don’t think there were dancers on our trip. Like the theater, were the dancers shut down for the season? 

I wonder what else my brother knows about our voyage.


Popular Posts

Peter Panned: The Peter Pan Statue in Kensington Park

Queen Me

Made on Location: Free Willy [memoir]

British Isles Friday: Parakeets in the Park

Walking in LA: What's the score?