How it is that I came to refer to my friend Stumpf as mamma (and she me) I have no recollection of, but it has managed to stick all these years. Mamma, an old college friend, was one of those friends that I knew would be bothered by my leaving New York. Not that she didn’t understand my frustration with being in the greatest city in the world with no clear career, partner or life plan but I was still there; still able to meet for long brunches or a quick lunch or a much needed afterwork drink.
To cushion the blow, I gifted her guide books to Great Britain and began to chat about her visiting me. Stumpf didn’t sleep on it! Oh no, she took action…and how!
The lovely Stumpf was my most recent visitor, coming armed with more travel guides, a long TO SEE LIST and charged batteries (not only in her camera but herself as well). Who knew a woman that stands at all of 5’1 could have so much – get up and go!!!!
And go she did…on her own quite a bit since I had a deadline for my feature (to be handed in before the start of classes), Burs (as the boyfriend will be referred to from now on) returning from his 3 week holiday and, last but not least, the fact that I’ve already seen everything! This latter point is one that anyone visiting me needs to be aware of, having been blessed with an abundance of visitors there is simply no real touristy place I haven’t seen. Luckily for me, Stumpf was completely okay with going it out on her own. Off she went to the Tower of London, Harrods, Buckingham Palace, Westminster, Big Ben and all the other great sites London has on offer.
Now, now I did spend some quality time with her. Stumpf’s MUST SEE list also had a number of lovely restaurants to dine at. My fave – Jaime Oliver’s Fifteen which you can read about here: http://www.fifteen.net. The best day spent was a Saturday walking tour with Burs as our tour guide. Stumpf being the luckier of my visitors because she got a special tour of unseen London that I can not give (I know Jacob’s will want a redo upon hearing this). It was fun walking behind the two of them as he pointed stuff out, Stumpf would remark on something that she had read in the guide book, Burs would them give more information as she snapped her camera madly. All the while I stood there nodding and grinning, thrilled that they were getting along so well. So much so, that Stumpf gave him a double thumbs up! (The dinner Burs cooked her did play its part in it though.)
In the end, mamma had a great time. As did I. It was great to have a close girlfriend to chat with, to have lunch with and meet the new guy. Bringing up how hard it is to be so far away from home and the people that matter to you. It was amazing to have another bit of my New York life here with my new, fresh London life. Wish I could just combine the two…