A week ago Tuesday Mom arrived on the early-morning bus, and we haven’t stopped moving since. She appeared at our doorstep just after 9am, rather proud of finding her way alone, and then we proposed a walk up to Port Meadow. So, less than two hours after her arrival, she found herself being escorted by the entire Penner clan up the 1.5 miles to the meadow, then across to the playground, and only then back home for nap time–for all of us. Starting that day, the weather has been gorgeous here, and we’ve been taking advantage of it. Walks, long stretches of play in the back garden, and visits to several playgrounds have been in order. England is having a record drought, which means that we’re enjoying unusually sunny and dry weather. I’m sure gardeners and farmers have worries, but for the rest of the population, this is blissful!
Today I took Mom and the kids to Blenheim Palace, where my GPS watch told me we did a good 7+ miles of roaming along paths and play areas. Such exertions called for a hearty cashew curry when we got home!
I did spend a few days last week at a conference in town, where all of the lectures were held in a windowless lecture hall deep in the bowels of the English faculty building, which carries all the markers of ’60s design. The first thing the conference organizers did upon welcoming us was apologize for making us come indoors to such a wretched environment when it was so nice outside! But it was a great conference anyway, and I heard some really interesting ideas and met some great people in my field. Now I need to follow up on those connections, when I have time . . .