Wednesday, November 16, 2005


As I was getting ready to make the trip to London, one of the things I had to do was see my Proctologist..(Don't even go there....You reach a certain age and it's maintainance, maintainance, MAINTAINANCE, you know?....)
It was this lovely man who said to me...'Oh, you are going to London? How wonderful...but you know, you really should see The Cotswolds....'
I had no idea what he was talking about and said something like..
'Well, I'm not going to have a lot of time to travel around...'.
He took me by my shoulders and looked me right in the eyes and said, 'Naomi, if anyone should see The Cotswolds, it's you!'

Well that was quite an intriguing thing to say and I thought a great deal about it and talked about it, which is my way, and the more I pondered, the more I thought....'Yeah, I think I need to do this. I think we all need to do this.'

I would be in London on my Birthday, and I always do something special for my give myself a party...(no presents), just for the getting together... It is a way to gather friends and any family who are around and really just celebrate each other, together.

So, when Betty said, she would think of something special to do, I told her that I knew what I wanted to do. I told her that I wanted to go to The Cotswolds. Now by this time I had learned that this was an area; a region, so to speak, that had many small villages and towns, all of which were very old and very quaint, and most all the houses and other buildings had been built with a particular stone from the area, known as Cotswold stone. There were many many villages and towns and of course we wouldn't be able to see all of them, but if we left London very early, we would be able to cover quite a few villages and then be back in London, in time for dinner at The Ivy, which was a Theatrical restaurant, comparable to Sardi's in New York, so we understood.

Through the wondefully helpful Concierge, Bob, at the Hotel,
I had found out that there were cars for hire for the day and many company's in London specialized in Day Trips for just this sort of outing.
I made the inquiries and found out the details and costs and Betty had generously said she wanted to take care of this

There would be six of us, altogether, Betty and her beau John Mosher who was also her Bass player for her show, Charley Berliner, Cousin Carol, Seemah Wilder, and myself. There were other Theatre West people in London at the time, but we were the core/close group who were always celebrating each others Birthday's.

All four other people wanted to share in this car-for-hire for the day, and insisted that this would be my Birthday present. Everyone knew that I had stated I really did not want any more 'things'...I was always saying, '.....if you must give me a gift, give me a consummable! Take me out to dinner or a movie or take me to the theatre...just don't giveme things!' Not only do I feel I have enough 'things', (I am an incurable collector of stuff...), but most times people pick out things that I really do not want! So this was a perfect plan for my Birthday and all the arrangements were made and I was told our driver was to be a gentleman named Ray.


My birthday fell on a Sunday that year which was perfect because it was Betty & John's day/night off, and they would not have to get back to anything other than the dinner that we all were planning at The Ivy. Most of us are Nightowls. It is almost inevitable if you work in the theatre that you are more of a night person than a day person...Betty habitually stays up till 3 in the morning, and so do I. I never have to worry about calling her too late at night because she usually is up as is her son Garrett, who is also a nightowl. He's a musician/composer, and works a lot at night because it's quiet at that habits are very similar as a painter and composer/writer; I like working at night much better than during the day. There are no interuptions; no one is coming to your door to deliver something; and no phone can get a really good run at whatever it is you are working on....(like right now, as I'm writing this, it's 2:35 a.m.)

So, that Sunday morning, I had not had enough sleep, but it was fine with me, and when we went to pick up Betty and John, they were late getting down to the car because they had overslept. But, still we got a pretty early start for us nightowls. Our driver was a lovely man who's car-for-hire was a kind SUV.


Everyone insisted I sit in the front because it was my birthday.
And in the seat behind Ray and myself, sat Carol and Seemah and Charlie; then in the third seat, Betty & John, who tried to catch a little 'cat nap' on our way out of the London area.

Betty had been in London many many times during her career, having played the Palladium with her husband Larry Parks, (and also after Larry starred in the film, "The Jolson Story", they had traveled to England and were received with open arms by the British people , and they had traveled around quite a bit because when they came to play The Palladium they also played 'The Provences', as they are called. Seemah had lived in London with her husband and four children, in the mid 70's, for an entire year, and they had traveled around quite a bit and, in fact, had been to the Cotswold town of of the very charming towns in this beautiful special area, which we planned to see.

And, in fact, the wonderful Ray had asked us did we want to have a 'Pub lunch', or a 'proper lunch'? Since this was a very special day for all of us, we said, 'a proper lunch'. He called ahead to The Lygon Arms, in Broadway...(a famous very old wonderful Hotel with a l-o-n-g glorious history)....and made a Luncheon reservation for the six of us.
(Seemah and her husband Bill, had stayed at The Lygon Arms back when they had spent that fabulous year on Golder's Green in Hampstead, where Seemah was staying on this very trip, with friends she had made all those many years ago.

We drove through these incredibly beautiful areas that had us all Ooooing and Ahhhing and stopping to take pictures of these very different homes

and incredibly beautiful gardens....
and all this, was seen, on the way to Broadway.

I had read that the town of Broadway had this Teddy Bear Musem and I love Teddy Bears and have quite a big collection of them. One of my very favorite Teddy's always travels with me on any trip I take. He has been to New York 8 times or more, and Florida probably at least 5 or 6 times, and San Fransico at least twice, and Sacramento, Palm Springs, San Diego, get the picture here, right? And this was his first trip to England. (He got to go one more time after that, as did I!)

So I really really wanted to see this Teddy Bear Musem, but, I'm getting ahead of myself here.

Lunch at The Lygon Arms was sublime! Great food; Beautiful service; and the setting was incredibly memorable...

We definitely were NOT in Los Angeles any more, Toto....

We had such a lot of fun, laughing and giggling over silly stuff...we were all giddy with the pleasure of being here in this beautiful area of England....
after lunch they served Coffee and Dessert in another room where we sat on couches and continued our racous conviviality! We did hope that we didn't seem like 'The Ugly Americans', to the lovely English people with whom we shared this smaller more intimate room....Happy? Oh, my Lord, we were like little children playing in a sand box, and I know we probably seemed drunk to the other patrons, (no one had even had one drink...), but it was just everyone's natural good great feeling about being inthis rare corner, on this beautiful summer day.

More to come...

Links to this post:


had this to say:

I'm so glad you included a picture of a thatched roof house! When I was there we had this amazing Scottish tour guide and she told us the story of her thatched roof home which she was renting out and how it caught on fire and her neighbors called to tell her that her "wee hoose was abarnin' doon" (it's much funnier if you can hear it with the accent of course). Such a beautiful place and lovely photos. Looking forward to more.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005 at 9:35:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Visiting from Michele's . . .again.

I can't believe I lived in the UK for a whole year and never visited the Cotswalds. I'm depressed now after looking at your wonderful pictures. What a fabuloous birthday present!!

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 4:07:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Here from Michele's. I'll come back later to read more about the Cotswalds. Have a wonderful day!!

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 4:09:00 AM PST 

Anonymous mar
had this to say:

What a wonderful birthday present! (I like mine also without gifts, it's the get together with loved ones that counts). Thanks for the pictures, too! It really is a beautiful place. Waiting for the next post! (what's your favorite Teddy's name?)

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 6:01:00 AM PST 

Blogger Me
had this to say:

I have just sat here, bouncing up and down on my seat, and squealing.. "OH OH OH... SHE WENT TO BROADWAY!!!!!"

I have been to the Cotswolds many times.. and love it so much there... so it's made my day to see pictures of a place which is familiar to me.. okay, well, I admit it also made me feel a little misty eyed and homesick... but I can't wait to see where else you visited. I hope you went to Bourton-on-the-Water ... :o)

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 6:56:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

What a beautiful place!! The pictures are so lovely. Those thatched roof cottages are so cozy looking! Just makes me want to visit there!!

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 7:58:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

My Grandmother came from England to America when she was 13 years old. She told me all the legends, stories and sayings from her homeland as soon as I was old enough to sit at her knee and listen to all the wonderful tales she would tell. I think that sometimes she would forget that I was there at her knee because as she talked she seemed to be so far away from me, even with my hand still upon her knee. I think her heart always remained in England. I know that she always wanted to go home to England someday but finances never seemed to come her way to allow it to be so. I told Grandmama and myself that we would go live there someday! "I will find a way Grandmama, you will see when I grow up, you and I will go there to live someday!" She would look all sad and pat me on my head and say, I know child, someday, someday. I never made it happen, I never had the finances either! But I am glad that you were able to fulfill my grandmothers dream.If you go again you might please take thoughts of my grandmother with you, along with your teddy bear. Her name was Constance Ward, and there was not a better Grandmother in the whole wide world! She past away about 10 years ago. But I still hold her and her love of England in my heart. And maybe (God willing)I will one day still have a chance to live in my own Pike Cottage.

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 9:34:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Karin--LOVE these thatched roofs...

Anita--You must go back sometime and take a side trip to visit this BEAUTIFUL area...

ally--do come back...

mar--it was indeed, a trky special birthday present...oddly enough, I never have my Teddy a name...

me--Yes! LOVED it there sooo much..and we did go to Bourton-On-The-Water...

Rachel--I agree with you Rachel; all the houses even the non thatched roof ones, were charming and memorable...I hope you can go sometime...

faira--I love this story about your brought tears to my eyes...what a very dear dear women she must have been..I hope yiu get to go for her, some day...

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 11:12:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

what a great way to spend a birthday. i , too, like the idea of "doing something" on my birthday instead of getting more stuff. i have enough stuff, but i cant ever have enough adventure, even that adventure is just amtrak to seattle for the day. to go to london, or the costwolds.. how spectaculer. and although i havent gone yet, i do get to feel as if i have, through you. thank you!

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 11:52:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

What a great way to spend a birthday :)

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 5:26:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Great pictures, and a wonderful story to go with them. You've given me the travel bug. I need to go somewhere, and soon!

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 5:43:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Beautiful pictures and beautiful memories! Man, I need to get out more. =)

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 6:41:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Nice pics. You don't look like an OLD OLD lady to me!

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 8:04:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

This is such a nice read and it's cool to put a face to the stories now!

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 8:28:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

I've never seen a roof like that before, it reminds me of a Gingerbread house, or Santa's village. I want to see a picture of "Teddy"...that lil guy has traveled far more places than I ever will, haha. It is obvious you & your friends get along so well & had a great time together.
You sure know how to keep us on the edge of our seat! I can't wait to read more.

ps...thank you for your support.

Thursday, November 17, 2005 at 9:48:00 PM PST 

had this to say:

Hi OOL, Here from Michelle's today :o)

Enjoying readingf your Cotswolds story, nice to see what Visitors from overseas think of things we tend to take for granted living so near to them.

Friday, November 18, 2005 at 4:06:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

LOVE the story, Naomi, please continue soon.

Friday, November 18, 2005 at 5:47:00 AM PST 

had this to say:

Thank you, It was enough to hear you tell about it. Going there by myself would never be the same without her by my side.In our hearts, Grandmother and I went there many times, together.

I can still hear her whispering to me in the morning, Wake up Merry Sunshine. Or when I am down, Keep your Pecker up, little bird. Or if I was dressed beneath my station, LOL, You look like a bag of Muck tied up Ugly! When I would cry over nothing she would say, Be a man Mrs. Potter! So Everyday I try to wake up Merry, I keep my pecker up when I can and I try to have the strength of soul that Mrs. Potter did. I still work at the dressing part. In that respect Grandmama would still be horrified!

Friday, November 18, 2005 at 7:28:00 AM PST 

Blogger RC
had this to say:

Beautiful story, and great pictures! The last time I read a story with pictures was Curious George right before my big brother tore it up to make play money, but I didn't play with it.

Hi, Michele sent me, and thanks for visitng my blog!

I hope you have a nice weekend, OldOldLady Of The Hills!

Friday, November 18, 2005 at 4:15:00 PM PST 

had this to say:


I will write you a set of instructions over the next couple of days of how to set up a blog roll :o)

Michele sent me

Saturday, December 3, 2005 at 1:40:00 AM PST 

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Name: OldOldLady Of The Hills
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