Then Wednesday morning, up while the lark was still yawning and checking its watch, back to Oxford (sometimes the Badger shows startling devotion to the cause!) arriving at 8 o’clock and catching a bus to the city centre, dawdling about in the shops having fun until it was TIME!
Time, that is, to walk along to the Randolph Hotel to meet up with Mary for coffee – it’s official; this is the furthest distances a friend and I have ever travelled for a coffee. She came from Kansas City.
OK confession – she didn’t only come to have coffee with me, she was visiting with her daughter Jessica who is studying in Oxford this year.
Mary got in touch with me a few years ago to let me know she teaches my Hawk and the Dove books with her high school students. She’s made some curriculum materials especially, and every now and then she lets me know what she’s doing and how the students respond to the stories, which is encouraging and lovely and fun.
Mary and her family upped sticks from wherever they were living before and moved across America to settle in Kansas City for one reason only: they wanted to live there because it’s the home of the 24:7 prayer movement and the International House of Prayer, which sounds wonderful. There is someone in the Prayer Room all the time, even through the night, praising God and praying for the world.
So she and I have corresponded quite a bit, but we never actually met until Wednesday, when she was in Oxford with her daughters Jessica and Emily, who are so beautiful, as lovely as their mother.
And we met at the Randolph Hotel, which is one of my favourite places ever, and talked and ate delectable pastries and shortbread, and shared hot drinks as if we were the happiest people in the world, for an hour and a half. And then I went off to Hastings and Mary and Emily and Jessica off to Bath.
Er . . . Bath is an English town.
You can see a photo of Mary here,(scroll down to the post entitled Thanksgiving recap" and the family group photo) with Jessica: Mary is third from the left, back row, wearing a black and white top, and Jessica is standing next along from her. And Emily is in the front in a green t-shirt. You can hear Mary here, at a meeting in the Daniel Academy.
I am so glad we met face-to-face at last; and I know, I just know, we will meet again some day.
(if you don’t know what I’m talking about, see here)
Oh, this is such a good book! I recommend! If you have a dragon of your own you will really enjoy this.