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<   BACK UK1999 #38 Sir Ridley to CanterburyNEXT  >

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Date: 8/31/99

        I got up early at 8:30 and ran through the Quay section of Poole again. Very quiet because it is Bank Holiday Monday. There was a cappuccino place on the pedestrian mall and I had a quick one and got back to the hotel so we could check out early (for us). We headed straight north for Salisbury (the steak) which Joe Pope took us near to 2 months ago when he took us to Stonehenge. We visited the Cathedral which houses the tomb of St. Osmund (1078) and the BEST preserved copy of the Magna Carta (it was filed away for centuries before someone found it in perfect condition). It also houses the oldest clock in England (1357).
From there it was a short drive to Stapleford, where Mr. Ridley has his home, called “Keepers Cottage”. He was waiting for us to arrive at the gate and explained to us in advance that he (93 yo) and his wife Elizabeth, both have Alzheimer’s Disease. The thatched-roof house sits a few yards away from the Wylye River – a very charming setting. We had a wonderful conversation and lunch. Even after 25 years, this is the first time I have ever had the opportunity to relate with him on a personal one-to-one basis. To me he is a hero and an icon in ophthalmology. His invention of the IOL has done more to make more people happy than anything else in the history of medicine. We had an unforgettable experience.
We drove south to Bournemouth, which is so much like Santa Monica, it’s scary. They have a beautiful sandy beach and a palisade high above the beach where there are many fine hotels. Sadly we had to move on and head east to Brighton. There we visited one of their piers (Holiday weekend) which was very lively and then went to the Brighton pavilion. This is a monstrous oriental looking palace built by King George IV when he was the Prince of Wales under his father George III (American Revolution). G-IV secretly married a divorcee and went to Brighton to hide her in this palace. Quite amazing.
We drove from Brighton directly east along the shore through Hastings (remember Battle of/William the Conqueror/1066) and finally landed in Canterbury, the seat of the Church of England. Missed dinner and had some burgers in a take out and took them to the popular Oranges Pub to have with some Guinness and wine.
Up early to drive to Dover and catch the Hovercraft to Calais. The England trip is finally OVER.
It will be fun to be in a “foreign” country again.
 

KJH                                                                                     Go To -> NEXT DIARIO #39 

Kenneth J. Hoffer, MD

KHofferMD@AOL.com            RETURN TO INDEX

Canterbury, Kent, England

Sent 8-31-99

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