We were pleased to welcome a group from Neukirchen-Vluyn at the end of September 2017: some of them had been before but for others it was their first visit. After a buffet lunch with Sue, the group of 8 met for a walk to clear heads after travelling, picking up the flavour of Buckingham from the Church, the site of St Rumbold’s tomb, the baby-founder of the town, the University and the river (only a trickle compared to Germany’s giant rivers), ending inevitably with a pint (or two) at the Woolpack to sample real England. Stephanie and family provided a magnificent feast for nearly 30 at their house where Anglo-German friendship continued to blossom accompanied by much chatter and laughter until eyes drooped after a very long day.
The focus of Sunday was an afternoon square dance with tea and cakes. The two expert German visitors, with keen local dancers persuaded German colleagues and their hosts to have a go, with Susie’s help. It proved more tricky than it looked but even so some are now considering taking it up!
Monday was a busy day for the German group with a tour of Oxford. Those on a first visit were much impressed by the grand surroundings, particularly New College. Some lunched in the crypt at St Mary’s, others where they could, before another tour, this time of Blenheim Palace, with its grandiose architecture and views of sweeping landscape design. No rest for the two intrepid square dancers however, who went on to another dance in Hemel Hempstead. Luckily Tuesday morning was left free and our two guests sampled the delights of Stowe with blue skies and sparkling sunshine.
One member of the group had arrived without her updated passport but thankfully it was sent on, arriving just 5 minutes before the group’s departure after a happy lunch with Stephanie. Another happy outcome of the visit: a long weekend is being planned for a German square dance square to come next year. In the meantime some of us are meeting them in November for their Martinsmarkt. Long live our Friendship Charter!