Sunday, July 13, 2008

Benjamin's Bar Mitzvah and other miscellaneous thoughts from London....

Ben, the star of the weekend!

Benjamin Franklin (one of my favorites) quotes:
"There are three faithful friends - an old wife, an old dog, and ready money."
"Keep your eyes wide open before marriage, half shut afterwards."
If you haven't read Franklin or tales of his life, do so posthaste. A fascinating fellow!

A few weeks ago I was in London for the Bar Mitzvah of my youngest nephew, Benjamin Kahn. Besides being outrageously expensive, London is still relatively civilized. In five days, I took a canal cruise, a walking tour of an old village (now part of London), a jog through a lovely park, and a bicycle ride along the Thames.

As you might expect, most of the long weekend was taken up with family events. I will post some photos of the Bar Mitzvah events for family members and friends who check this blog. For others without interest in the subject, my apologies (skip to the end).

Ben, Daniel and Rachel with cousin Noa

Ben and his uncle Larry Soberman

Sally Soberman, the matriarch
of the family!

My sibs Larry and Marcia

Marcia and Daniel
My mother Sally Soberman
and sister Marcia Fenton

Two sisters - Marcia and Reva

Reva and Robert
at Shabbat brunch

A happy time
for the family!

For those of you that
were wondering...yes
I was there too (although
mostly on the other side
of the camera lens).

Lamb chops...yummy

Alfred Kahn
with Rachel

Rachel and Daniel give a speech
in honor of their brother Ben

The elegant club where
the party took place

Sushi table


Tea bags!

The party/dining room

Dancing into the night!

Ben made several lovely speeches, including this one.

My baby sister Reva (mother of the Bar Mitzvah boy) recently celebrated a "big" birthday. In her honor Linda and I made a collage of photos of her life.
Now for highlights of the rest of my short trip.

On arrival, as usual, I was tired. My mother had arrived the previous day, and had plenty of energy. So we took a bus to Camden Town, where we boarded a boat on one of the many canals in London. (Yes, we too were surprised to learn about the existence of these canals).

The canals afforded views of beautiful buildings, the zoo, and many barges where Londoners live yearround! It was a lovely, warm day, and a perfect way to enjoy London without too much stress on my arrival day.

On Sunday morning I took a walking tour of Hampstead, an ancient small village which is now part of London proper. Mansions and narrow mews, pubs and gardens. A great way to spend the morning.

Afterwards, I had a tasty lunch (smoked salmon and mackeral pie with a pint of good English beer)
at a centuries old pub, the Holly Bush.

My last day in London I spent with old friends Rebecca and Robert Willer. Rebecca went to college with me, and now owns a gorgeous gallery in the Kensington area ( Check it out.

Robert is a barrister (attorney), who enjoys bicycle riding around the world. He took me on a three hour ride along the Thames River. It's unbelievable - 10 minutes outside of London is a world (and perhaps a century) away. We stopped at a nursery/restaurant for tea and cakes. We also watched a lot of Wimbleton tennis on television (over wine and fruit tart).

That evening, at my request, we went for Indian food at Malabar. The pictured desert (whose name escapes me), was wonderful!

London was terrific. I packed a lot of activity in a short period of time. The only thing missing was Linda. That won't happen again.

Cheerio until my next blog posting.

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