Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Canterbury, and all its great wonder.

Well I said that I would talk about Canterbury next time - little expecting that it would take me so
long to get to a computer to be able to do so. 

My hotel was quite a way out of town, and so when I left in the morning I decided that I would
spend the day exploring and not return till evening. 

My first task was to find some brekky, and then get a stamp for my pilgrim record, but it didn't
turn out that way.  As I walked past the Cathedral I was a bit horrified to see that it was going to
cost me 10 pounds to explore it and so I flashed my pilgrim passport and was admitted free!  I
went straight to the office to get my stamp and was told that the duty chaplain that day was from
Australia and would be saying prayers in the nave shortly.  As I walked through the door the
clergyman behind me, who I held the door open for, thanked me.  My response was "You must be
the Australian vicar" - his was " they call me the Vicar of Oz"!

He was a delightful man, introducing me to his wife organizing an audio tour for me, and then
after that, taking me on my own personalized "Australian" tour of the Cathedral showing me
various things of particular interests to Australians, including a bust of Gipps (Gippsland) and a
shoe print of John Blaxland who went to the Kings school in Canterbury before doing his exploring
bit in the Blue Mountains.

The real name for the "vicar of oz" is the Revd. Ken Childs, and after our tour he took me out to
the departure point for pilgrims on the Via Francigena and gave me a very special blessing - I just
wish I could have recorded his words!

The rest of my time in Canterbury was filled with general exploring, and mundane housekeeping
thins - including my breakfast about 4 hours after I had intended.  I turned that into brunch and
had a long chat to the barman who was also a chef.  He gave the recipe for "Eton Mess";  equal
quantities of whipped cream, crumbled meringue and strawberries.  It is best to either fold a little
castor sugar into the whipped cream of else roll the strawberries in some castor sugar.  We
debated the merits of castor as opposed to icing sugar, he preferred castor!

That's all of Canterbury.  I am having trouble being able to put pictures on, but will do so at my
first opportunity. 

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