July 19th

Yesterday was clearly a banner day for Mom & I, because…shhhh…don’t tell anyone…because Darina Allen invited us to her house for tea in the afternoon after class. Well, you can imagine how thrilled we were to walk two doors over from our cottage to the back door of Darina and Tim’s magnificent regency era manor house named Kinoith. We actually beat Darina home and while we were inside her beautiful home waiting for the internationally acclaimed doyene of good food to arrive, I must admit we were bad little guests and roamed brazenly around the place taking each other’s pictures as if we were cooking at her stove, writing at her computer (turns out she doesn’t use a computer and we were at Tim’s) working at her sink etc…I tried to find the piano for Mom to play (I had seen one 5 years ago-  this was not my first time in Darina’s home, you see…) but I (free-range, in every sense of the word) chicken’d out. When Darina did arrive home we were quietly waiting in the kitchen like good little girls who had done nothing wrong although oddly out of breath. I asked if she still had a pianny and she does! So Mom sat down to a wonderful instument in the Library and played away. When Tim arrived home a little later, he was wondering where the "revolutionary" music was coming from…Mom played (magnificently, I might add) without benefit of sheet music, hymns like "Be thou my vison" and other of her (and my) favorites but couldn’t resist ending with battle hymn "Mine eyes have seen the glory" and the effect was absolutely rousing. Tea was lovely. Tim had his tea (beer) in his tea cup (tumbler) and the rest of us, Darina along with some lovely friends of hers from somewhere nearby, had tea in the loveliest cups ever. The cups reminded me of the Lusterware I imagine that Tasha Tudor had, judging from her paintings…
We ate "Bickies". Know what those are? Neither do I! Must be cookies or sweets or something wonderful like that because they turned out to be cookies and sweets and things wonderful like that! 
We left supremely happy. Thank you Darina and Tim Allen for the best afternoon tea ever.
Love, Karen

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