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Shrewsbury in sun and rain [Aug. 5th, 2017|07:05 pm]

We had a splendid and exhausting day yesterday about Wightwick Manor, about which I will probably have more to say when I have sorted out my thoughts (and my photos). Now we are in Shrewsbury: we arrived yesterday evening at the Lion, where we are staying, and mentioned as we checked in that we are here for a party to be held in this hotel: "Oh, you're here for S.'s party! Isn't she lovely? Have you known her long?"

We don't have time for more than the briefest look at the town. Last night we walked up the hill to the Square, and dined at 'Côte - a pseudo-French bistro, one of a chain but nicely done, if loud. This morning, between the showers, we took a brief walk along the town walls, and visited the Cathedral (it's a Catholic cathedral, and by Pugin, but although the commission originally went to AWN Pugin, he died before he could carry it out, and the design is in fact by his son Edward, aged 18). I'd have thought it a worthwhile visit anyway, but I was completely bowled over by the work of a woman artist completely unknown to me:

Noah's Ark

The Cathedral has several windows by Margaret Rope, and they are wonderful.

Time to return to the hotel, put on our party finery, and party. Inevitably, we had less time to talk to the unbirthday girl than we would have liked, but she was very good at introducing us to people, and making sure we had someone to talk to. We thought we were doing pretty well telling people that [personal profile] durham_rambler had been at University with S. in the late '60s, but we were seated at lunch with even longer-time friends, including a schoolfriend and the French penfriend of her teenage years (and her equally French husband). There was a quiz, memorable mostly (to me, at any rate) for the cultural dexterity with which our Frenchman identified a picture as the star from the movie about Welsh miners playing in a band, which I was able to name as Brassed Off (despite it not, in fact, being set in Wales...), which enabled another member of team to name Pete Postlethwaite. Leaving me to explain the title Brassed Off to the French couple who knew it as Les Virtuoses.

There was music, provided by someone's expertise with Spotify, which was interesting: I've been thinking I ought to try it out, but, um, this tiny sample was resistible. Eventually we gave up on it, and just continued chatting, untilwe all collapsed. And tomorrow we will go and visit S. at home, which I hope will be our real chance to catch up with her. But now, maybe a breath of air...

This entry cross-posted from Dreamwidth: comments always welcome, at either location.