All-in-all, it was a spectacular day! Excellent weather, a sky of purest azure!
I got up late this morning. Really late! I didn't pop out of bed until nearly seven-thirty! After a bit of a slouch around the house, I got a cup of coffee and checked my email. At about ten I headed out for the day which promised to be a big one.
Apparently, the Molesey Carnival is often held in weather that is, shall we say, "less than ideal?" My friend, Terry, tells the story of the year he was on a float at the carnival for one of the local pubs. The float depicted Noah's Ark and, as is fitting for such a theme, the rain was of biblical proportions. (And no, I checked... The Ark, having been built on a lori was not, alas, sea-worthy!)
But this morning was as lovely a day as one could wish for. My first stop, after a nice ride around was Beauchamp (pronounced "BEACH em") Road for a traditional English Breakfast. Terry and Angie went all-out! There was fresh baked bread, sausages, mushrooms, the whole lot!
ADVENTURE ALERT: Back in one of my early blog entries in December 2004, I said that I might even have to try black pudding while I was here. For those of you who think that was an empty threat, Ha! I had black pudding! I have to admit it was not bad. I am not crazy about the texture, but the taste is not bad at all.
After breakfast, we headed off to the Poyntz Arms in Molesey on the High Street for the carnival. The parade was a blast. Local groups all got got up floats and there were clowns and everything!
The interesting thing about the Molesey Carnival that occurs to an outsider watching it is that these Molesey-ians are a hale and hearty lot! We have parades in the states, loads of 'em! Heck, Dad and Flo live in a town of 97 people and even Kensington has a parade. But unlike we wimpy citizens of the backward United States, these brave souls don't close the streets along the parade route!
Molesey Carnival runs along an open thoroughfare! The floats and marching bands are vying for space on the road with London Transit, official vehicles and hoi polloi! (Jokingly, I pointed at a bus as it passed the parade and referred to it as the most imaginative float in the parade. A few of the passengers waived as they passed... Even they were in the spirit!)
I wondered if there would be scantily clad Brazilian Babes (Like Carnival in Rio) and soon discovered that there were, after a fashion. Well he wasn't Brazilian or a babe, but he was scantily clad. The parade was brought to a conclusion with the local constabulary. This biker (and the people on the 411 bus were caught-up behind the parade. Oh well, I hope they had nowhere they needed to be immediately!
After the parade, we retreated into the Poyntz for another pint and camaraderie. What a lovely day!
Around 14:30 I decided I could take no more of this excitement and headed home for a nap. It was a welcome break. Tonight I am headed back into the fray! I've had my nap and a shower. It is time to get on the bike and head over to The King's Arms for a pint or two among friends.
What a great day!
Oh, and have I said "what a great day?"
I hope that wherever you are today, your day is excellent!
Don Bergquist - 03rd June 2006 - Thames Ditton, Surrey, United Kingdom