This would be everyone. At my graduation!
This is what it looks like when (almost all of) your entire family comes to your graduation. From halfway across the world. (Because they’re just that amazing.)
And the rest of the summer….
They dined on mince, and slices of quince, Which they ate with a runcible spoon.
(Confession: I have been stealing pictures… Not all of these are mine.)
On my mom’s birthday we ate at The Runcible Spoon in Stokes Croft. (The food was amazing!)
Left to right: (Uncle) Sam, (cousin) Quinn, (Aunt) Sarah, ((brother) Scott, (great-aunt) Esther, (parents) Jacquie & Mike, me, (grandma) Lucy, (cousin) Hannah, & (grandma) Susan. (Everyone but Grandpa Sam!)
My brother and I with our grandpa (and I’ll say it again: no, I don’t have any idea where I thought the camera was or what I was looking at).
The morning that I made a Full English Breakfast – with a lot of help from my uncle and cousin. (Making breakfast is practically a heroic act for me, because I don’t do mornings. Or things approaching mornings. Or anything morning-like… And cooking for twelve people? Several of whom are incredible cooks themselves?)
With my cousins and my brother at Edinburgh castle – and with my aunt and grandma in the city of…
Loch Lomond – we went for a hike
Melrose Abbey, Scotland.
I like ruined things.
(I’m not sure if this is because I’m an archaeologist – or if it might have been what drew me to archaeology in the first place. That said, give me a ruined abbey over a whole one, any day. Especially for a picnic.)
The site is beautiful.
And, on an archaeological note, the excavated foundations of the surrounding buildings – the way that they have been cleaned and displayed – is absolutely amazing! I walked my cousins through the “rooms” and pointed out a medieval toilet!
Stare at this and imagine wind. (A lot of wind.) And you’re there.
(The abbeys were the first time I’ve used the camera on my phone – and, other than the interesting colourinng – which is actually growing on me for the romantic feeling it lends – it’s not too bad…)
On top of Hadrian’s Wall with my cousin, who’s wearing my shawl (and laughing about it – she thought I was crazy, wrapping it around my head instead of using an umbrella).
Hadrian’s Wall was built by the Romans in 122 AD, marking the border between England and Scotland. It runs the entire width of England. (The Scottish border has since moved north.)
The Emperor Hadrian gave up on conquering the Scots – they couldn’t beat them – so they walled them off. (At least, that’s how the Scots would tell the story.)
It probably had a lot to do with taxes and trade. It might have just been a display of power. At any rate, it was the most heavily fortified border in Europe, at the time. Permanent garrisons and forts were built into it, housing soldiers. It was occupied (more or less) until the Romans withdrew from England- and probably long after, by locals wo decided to move into it – until they decided to take the stone and build their own buildings.
Looking back, I should have felt bad about climbing ontop of a UNESCO World Heritage site. (I refused to let my family crawl all over the burial mounds near Stonehenge, and I chided my Mom for wanting to jump fences to get closer. I am, after all, an archaeology student.)
Frankly, site conservation didn’t even occur to me at the time.
I was simply engaging in de-valuing imperialism. It almost felt political; thumbing our noses at the old Empire.
Perhaps I’ve been in England too long…