Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Visiting the UK: Part Two

In case you didn't notice yesterday, the answer to one of my quiz questions from Five on Friday was regarding the picture of the painted wooden bird from the Ashmolean Museum where we visited the Egyptian displays.

After a great nights sleep for me and a poor night for everyone else, A and I headed to the surrounding area of Oxfordshire before our commute back to her place in Shropshire. As I'd mentioned, A was my tour guide for the week and she suggested we visit Blenheim Palace. I happily agreed. I love visiting heritage homes and grand estates and was sure Blenheim would provide.

And provide it did. 

Blenheim Palace is opulent in every sense of the word.

It is filled to the top with gorgeously carved columns and arches, paintings on ceilings, crystal in chandeliers, tapestries, orchids and the list goes on.

Clocks that were more works of art than keepers of time were in one of the drawing rooms. This clock was one of two. From eavesdropping on another guest to Blenheim I learned that 'drawing' room comes from the word 'withdrawing' room referring to the time after a meal when the women would 'withdraw' to another room away from the men who were left to their cigars and alcohol. Over time, the word was reduced to 'drawing' room.

This gorgeous cradle stood out for me. Lovely gold leaf and paintings. Hopefully you can read the story behind the cradle if you click on the image of the information board.

The library of my dreams is at Blenheim - though mine wouldn't be pink. I think I could put up with the pink if it came wrapped in the Blenheim Palace package though!

I took the following picture for my eight year old. Eldest caught two fish this past weekend and he is too is eight years old.

Sir Winston Churchill was born in Blenheim Palace two months premature whilst his parent were attending a dinner party. The poor child's parents had to borrow clothes from someone in the local village as they were ill prepared for such an early arrival!

I have long admired Winston Churchill and particularly his work and speeches made during WWII. What I didn't realize, however, was what a hopeless romantic he was. He proposed to his beloved, Clementine Hozier, on the grounds of Blenheim Palace in the Temple of Diana. I love the following quote by him:

Even if I had never felt highly towards the man, Winston Churchill now holds an even more special place in my heart.

A and I ate at one of the three or four eating establishments on the Palace grounds. We opted for a sandwich and tea lunch versus a sit down and relatively pricey meal at the restaurant. This little sweetie launched itself at my plate and I was forced to eat it. Yes, it was as good as it looks. Maybe even better.

The 8th Duke of Marlborough, also known as the 'Wicked Duke', had a passion for scientific experiments and orchids and the flowers were scattered in displays around the Palace and in the cafe.

Stunning from the front, Blenheim is equally majestic from the back where A and I went for a walk through the gardens. We were looking for the formal gardens which we did not manage to find before we had to depart but I did get a chance to run my feet through that amazingly manicured lawn.

All in all, my second day in the UK was a wonderful one and I really enjoyed visiting this impressive World Heritage Site.


Did you notice it? The answer to the author of the quote in my quiz photograph is Sir Winston Churchill.


  1. Loved this one, particularly the quote....hmmmm should I put it in a prominent place for my DH to read each day?!?!?

    1. I think you should! It's a quote worth keeping;)!