It’s every bit as impressive as you would imagine. On Saturday afternoon we bundled up our purchases from Portobello and hopped on a train out to Windsor Castle. The train station is across the street from the castle – how convenient – and it was a lively, bustling place even though we were under overcast skies.
The castle is magnificent, and while the inside reminded me a great deal of Versailles, the outside couldn’t be more different. Versailles stands out in the open, with no particular defenses. Windsor was clearly a working castle in the days when that meant having narrow slits in the outer wall for your archers to fire on invaders.
Happily, Britain is a little less concerned about invaders these days, so the moat has been converted into flower gardens.
We weren’t allowed to take pictures inside any of the buildings, which is just as well, since it would be hard to do justice to those opulent spaces with my battered little point and shoot. However, we did get the opportunity to take the stereotypical tourist picture with one of the Queen’s royal guards:
A few minutes later, several of those soldiers marched past while I was waiting on Chels outside a gift shop. I don’t know if you can see it in the picture, but these boys are carrying serious guns:
One of the highlights of the entire trip came for us at the end of our afternoon in Windsor. We decided to stay after touring hours for the Evensong service at St. George’s Chapel on the castle grounds. There were only about 40 people there, so it was incredibly intimate. The service took place in the Quire, which is the room in which the Queen and her knights and ladies of the Order of the Garter sit for ceremonial events. Chelsea got to sit in Prince William’s seat. This was another no-photos occasion, but sitting in the dim lights of the chapel, listening to this incredible choir sing the service, I felt like the memory would be more than enough for me.
Gentle readers, your correspondent will be taking a summer break, and posting will be very light over the next two weeks. See you again soon. In the meantime, happy weekend!