Monday, April 19, 2021
Millions of excited Americans came to greet and meet him during the 13 months he traveled through the courntry, going nearly 6,000 miles by carriage, horseback, riverboat etc. His visit to Hopkinton came five days after a huge reception in Concord, NH, only recently designated the capital of the state.
Sunday, March 28, 2021
I've been playing around with Canva designing some small graphics featuring blurbs from reviews of my books. Here are a few for Liberty-Loving Lafayette, my unique rhyming history inspired by the Broadway smash hit, Hamilton.
I've never carried a torch before, but am delighted that Booklife thinks I have done so with this book.
Saturday, February 27, 2021
Lin Manuel-Miranda’s Tony award-winning
Saturday, January 30, 2021
On the same Jane Austen tour of England on which I met Nigel Nicolson (see previous blog post), we also visited Mapperton House, in Dorset, UK. It has beautiful gardens, and was used as the location for Randalls (where the Westons live) in the 1996 BBC production of Emma. In reality, it is the home of the Earl and Countess of Sandwich.
Of course, as most of you know, an 18th century Earl of Sandwich, not wanting to take time away from his gambling (card game or whatever) to dine, is reputed to have asked for some meat with bread around it. This event is supposed to be the origin of the sandwich.
At any rate, we were to have lunch at Mapperton, hostessed by the Countess herself. Unfortunately, she was delayed. We learned eventually that this was due to her train being late coming back from London. The reason for her trip there? When Emma was filmed, a historic portrait of one of the earls, maybe the sandwich guy himself, had been removed from the house, perhaps because it was inappropriate for "Randalls," and stored in a secure "fire-proof" location in London.
Which had burned down.
The countess had been thus been visiting the National Portrait Gallery to see if purchasing a replacement for the lost portrait was possible.
She said a friend of hers had suffered a greater loss. ALL the furnishings had been removed from her house when it was used as a location (for Hartfield? Donwell Abbey?) for the same Emma production.All had also been lost in the fire.
An any rate, while waiting for the countess to arrive, we had ample time to wander about the grounds. In doing so, I noticed some ornate-looking, unusually large chickens.
I proclaimed to our group, "Well! I've seen plenty of chicken sandwiches, but this is the first time I've ever seen a Sandwich chicken."
Obviously, my first name is "Dorothea." However, when I was born my brother Paul, only 15 months older than I, had a bit of trouble saying my four syllable name. He called me "Dee Dee." So that is what everyone called me.
When I was 13, however, I went to a summer camp where the other girls in my cabin thought that "Dee Dee" looked too juvenile for a teenager. Because of this, I decided to change the spelling to "Deedy." I don't really remember why, except I thought to emulate "Kathy," or "Patty," or "Judy," etc.
It wasn't until I was MUCH older that I realized that the word "Deedy" has an actual meaning. Or it used to. In England.
It all started when I read Jane Austen's novel Emma for the umpteenth time.
Chapter 10 opens thusly:
The appearance of the little sitting-room as they entered, was tranquillity itself; Mrs. Bates, deprived of her usual employment, slumbering on one side of the fire, Frank Churchill, at a table near her, most deedily occupied about her spectacles, and Jane Fairfax, standing with her back to them, intent on her pianoforte.
Of course, first I chuckled, because it was obvious to those privy to their secret relatioship that Frank and Jane, for once unchaperoned because of her grandmother's nap, had been doing Something Else but quickly took a more innocent pose.
Then I thought, "Whoa. Deedily??"
That sent me straight to the dictionary, and here's what I found (these are, of course, modern internet versions of what I found in the late 20th century).
Definition of deedily:
So. At least in archaic British English, Deedy actually has a meaning (possibly based on "full of deeds").
I met Nigel Nicolson. son of Virginia Woolf's lover, the British writer/gardener Vita Sackville-West. He was the president of the Kent branch of the Jane Austen Society at the time, and a distinguished author, publisher, and Jane Austen scholar.
I was on a tour with the Jane Austen Society of North America (JASNA) when I met Mr. Nicolson at Godmersham. (This was the Kent estate that Jane Austen's brother, Edward, inherited from his adoptive parents).
I had a nametag on identifying me as a JASNA member, and "DEEDY" was written on it in large letters. Mr. Nicolson looked at it, then looked at me.
"I like your name," he said.
Right then I decided that I like it, too.
Dorothea (AKA Deedy) Jensen
Nigel Nicolson at the "Garden Front" of Godmersham