Bonfire Night November 5th & Guy Fawkes effigy
The Photo: An English tradition, bonfires on Guy Fawkes Day to celebrate the foiling of the gunpowder plot by Roman Catholic activists to blow up the Palace of Westminster during the state opening of Parliament on November 5, 1605.
Bonfire Night 2015: Why do we celebrate fireworks night? Who was Guy Fawkes?“Every year on November 5th, the anniversary of the Gunpowder Plot, Catholic explosive expert Guy Fawkes is remembered and Britain celebrates the Houses of Parliament remaining intact.” The complete article from the Telegraph can be read HERE
Fireworks on Bonfire night: We had intended to drive over to Hampstead Heath which overlooks central London from the North West to view the fireworks. However, we had a better offer from Alexei the Russian expatriate who is a friend and neighbor to my London home, Blackthorn House, in Eaton Square, Belgravia. He has an office on a top floor of a building in The City at 30 St Mary Axe (fondly known as The Gherkin) which is currently the 10th tallest building in London at 590 feet and is a just few blocks north east of the Tower of London. Alexi, his daughter Veronika, the Dryads (Bryony and Claire), Bea who had come down from Cambridge and I all piled into my Bentley and one of my bodyguards drove us into the financial heart of London. Alexei’s office has a South West view –looking up river - so we had an amazing view of central London along the Thames and the fireworks. Alexi had lain on a massive feast: caviar from the Caspian Sea, French Champaign, prawns on ice and a standing beef roast and scandalously decadent desserts! It was all delicious, but a man’s menu almost all protein with only a tray of mixed veggies. It all tasted delicious, but it meant more time in the studio to burn off the extra calories.
Anti-capitalist protest: Protestors wearing a Guy Fawkes masks during the 'Million Masks March', on Bonfire night struggled with police. 50+ protestors were arrested several police were hurt and a police car was set afire. Fortunately the area where we were (the financial district) was quiet and like the three wise men we arrived from the east and left for home the same way. It was a long roundabout route, but we avoided the protestors and there was little congestion.
Christmas at Blackthorn Castle: I’ve been away from the castle for almost a year aside from occasional quick inspections of the construction underway. The construction is now complete and signed off on so the usual quiet has returned to the mountain top on which the castle has perched for hundreds of years. My predecessors, Edith, 22nd Baroness Blackthorn and all the women preceding her, always had a grand Christmas party for the villagers who live below the castle and provide the labor and trades which keep the Barony of Blackthorn running smoothly and I’m expected to continue the tradition.
Charles, my Chamberlain of the Household and Estate Manager of the Barony, and I met this week to discuss his plans for the Barony’s 2015 Christmas party. He came down to London on Estate business and we had a productive two hour planning meeting and settled most issues. I don’t plan to change much (if anything) as the Holiday decorations and festivities have gone well (according to Edith’s diary) for years so I see no need to change a plan that is already wildly successful.
Y NADOLIG (Christmas): The custom in many parts of Wales was to attend a very early church service known as "Plygain" (daybreak), between 3am and 6am. [What I’ve always thought of as a ‘Sunrise service’.] Men gathered in rural churches to sing, mainly unaccompanied, three or four part harmony carols in a service that went on for three hours or so. The custom managed to survive in many country areas, and because of its simplicity and beauty is being revived in many others. Charles along with the local Vicar is bringing it back and it has become popular with the villagers. After the service, a day of feasting and drinking begins and we are trying to curb the excessive use of alcohol with games, but not so as to deprive the men of their pints and ciggis.
While slow to catch on in rural Wales since it’s introduction was only a hundred and fifty years ago the Christmas Tree, an imported tradition from Germany in Queen Victoria’s time, has become popular in the village and the lighting of the castle’s tree has always been popular as there is time off from work and plenty to eat. Too, there is an open house on Christmas Eve with a serving line for roast beef and lamb as well as deserts for all the villagers and the Baroness personally greets as many members of the village as can come.
Christmas guests from the west: I’m looking forward to having a great friend from Las Vegas with me for Christmas. Anya and a group of her male friends from the same agency for which she is a trouble shooter will be staying with me at the castle for several weeks. She is bringing young men with very active libidos who have been in the field on assignment where they had little opportunity for sexual release except for Rosie Palm and her five sisters since we will be short of men and I’m always in the mood to have PVI with new men. Marvin, Morning Wood, and Bea will be down from Cambridge, but I’m not sure whether Nikolai will be able to get off from his casting at the ROH as he has already taken a good bit of personal time and The Holidays are when the Ballet makes most of their money (the Nutcracker) for the year.
Thanksgiving in the UK: It seems strange to contemplate celebrating Thanksgiving in the UK this year. I should be CD13 then and very fertile. Nikolai is busy performing with the ballet so he won’t be readily available. I thought if I wanted to see Marvin I would have to go up to Cambridge and spend a day or two with him. However, I found Trinity College will be on Holiday (for Thanksgiving!) from 24 November to 30 November so he can come down to London! I was blown away to find that Thanksgiving is now being celebrated by a lot of Anglo-American families and other Brits as a Holiday to brighten the Wintery weather in the UK with no requirement for presents and heavy decorating so the celebrants can just relax. I thought if I went to Cambridge it would create a scandal if I stayed in his rooms, but I could get a place nearby and he could sleep with me there. Now that won’t be necessary as we will be together in London. Though he has promised me that he can get us into the Wren Library after hours where I have always wanted to have sex with him in the stacks.