My Mother’s Voice

Alzheimer’s being the conniving thieving bitch that  it is, my mother wasn’t herself in the final years of her life. The  woman I visited in the Alzheimer’s special care unit was a stranger wearing my mother’s skin but not much else, like the invasion of the body snatchers had taken place, month after month beneath the surface, until one day we looked and the woman we knew was gone, replaced by some alien being. An imposter. Intruder alert. Intruder alert. She died back in 2012. Don’t worry; I won’t be getting maudlin on you.  My real mother–not that stranger in a wheel chair, head nodding on her shoulder–is who I want to think about today.  My real mother —Enid Maude Good nee Hayden, a prim, old-fashioned name, perhaps the only thing about her I didn’t love— was British-born and had a lovely London lilt to her voice her whole life even though she left England in the mid-1950’s. I suppose at thirty, her vocal patterns were already frozen in place.  Sounding like a cross between

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Above Ground on the London Underground—Day 57: Mile End

Park at Mile End Image via SublimePhotography.com

If it's Friday we must be back in London. Every Friday I take a virtual walking tour ‘above ground’ on the London Underground. Using my Tube guide & my fitbit® device, my goal is to walk 10,000 steps a day roughly following along the Underground route, reporting back here on Fridays with my findings We're currently following the Central Line. Here are the previous days. This is Day 57.

One of the first London suburbs, the East London town of Mile End feels worlds away from bustling London. Still, Mile End isn’t without its points of interest. 





The nearby Queen Mary University of London located houses a cemetery in its midst. A strange thing place for a cemetery but yes, the uni came second, the graveyard came first. One of the only remaining Sephardic cemeteries in England, the Neuvo, or Novo Beth Chaim Sephardic cemetery was first used by Spanish and Portuguese Jews—making their home openly in England after centuries of persecution—in 1733. The graves are all low profile, almost flat, apparently symbolizing the equality of all in death. 



It’s not everyday that you look up at a bridge running over a roadway to see it planted with grass and trees, but that’s th Green Bridge. Right outside the Mile End Station the yellow construction—why not the yellow bridge?—connects two parts of the Mile End Park. Called the Green Bridge because the area above the bridge of the grass and the trees, the bridge is an extension of the park. 
On the lower street level are shops and restaurants and a path that leads all the way to Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. There’s a bike rental agency under the bridge too, if you prefer a ride to a walk.



As for me, I’m searching for the Greedy Cow Cafe where we can grab a burger or a steak before we set off  but also, if one is so inclined, a camel, kangaroo or wild boar burger. Thinking of the camel I rode once as a child, I just don’t think I could eat one. A kangaroo? What would Winnie the Pooh think? Actually the more I think about it, the more I’m put off meat altogether. I think I’ll just have a coffee and some lovely flaming Creme Brulee, thanks very much.

Now, off to the park we go. Next week, we’ll see what there is to see.





Novo Beth Chaim Cemetery
Queen Mary University of London
Mile End Rd, London E1 4NS
44 20 7882 5555


Greedy Cow Cafe
2 Grove Rd, London E3 5AX
44 20 8983 3304

Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park
London E20 2ST
44 800 072 2110



Counting the Fitbit steps



Day 1-56:                                                        389,590 steps/171.25 miles


Day 57: Mile End          .                                    7000 steps/2.9 miles
                                                          

Total Imaginary Miles to Date                    396,590 steps/174.15 miles







Connect with Joy Weese Moll's British Isles Friday 

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