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"Just be who you are, calm and clear and bright." - Richard Bach, Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah


I’d had a vague and way-too-ambitious notion of going to both Oxford and York while I was in England, but in the end I just decided to spend a couple nights in Rye, which is about two hours south-east of London. I’d read a little about medieval churches dotted along a spooky coastal marsh, though in the end I couldn’t travel any farther because of the weather.

Rye is enchanting, especially under a liberal dusting of snow. I went to St. Mary’s, but the tower was closed for fear of ice on the steps; all the most interesting shops (antiques, secondhand books, vintage clothing, YARN) were closed; and Lamb House (where Henry James lived while writing The Wings of the Dove) doesn’t open until March or April. So there was absolutely nothing to do but walk around in the snow taking pictures, but that suited me fine.

Above: St. Mary’s churchyard, mid-morning.

Below: the Landgate right after it had started to snow again; another view of the churchyard; at the bottom of Mermaid Street, mid-afternoon; the view from the top of Trader’s Passage at 4:30pm; the Old Borough Arms (which I can’t recommend highly enough).

2 Comments to Rye

  1. Susan's Gravatar Susan
    January 28, 2010 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    These photos are just stunning! I want to go see for myself!

  2. Kate's Gravatar Kate
    January 28, 2010 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    I love the Landgate! At least you probably didn't have to deal with other tourists.

    In response to Susan: I was just thinking this morning that the three of us need to take a trip together. Italy?

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Hi! I'm Camille. I only write stories that could never ever happen in real life, though I do believe in real-life magic. If we were in the same room I'd fix you a cup of tea, but for now we'll have to settle for a virtual connection. I'm really glad you're here.