Countdown: 2 days to go to King Richard III’s reinterment.
My face is starting to hurt a little from all the smiling I am doing. I got up before seven today to queue to see King Richard III lying in repose. I had meant to get up at six, but that was just not possible. I managed to get to the line-up before eight and chatted to a lovely man while waiting who apparently “parked on top of Richard for 30 years.” I asked if he was coming to apologise! The Cathedral was opened an hour earlier than planned as the line-up was so long and I heard that the Cathedral was staying open to nine tonight to accommodate the crowds. This early opening meant that I only had to wait in line for about 45 minutes, although I had been prepared to wait an hour and a half or more.
The coffin is covered with a lovely embroidered pall featuring the key figures of the dig for Richard on one side and historical figures on the other side. This will go on permanent display in the Cathedral. However, once again, we were barked at like errant children as we filed pass the coffin. “Move along!” What a lovely way to treat people after they have lined up for hours and about to donate money!
Anyway, I went to the Guild Hall next to meet my fellow Canadian Ricardians, but as it was not open yet, some of us waited outside and were interviewed by the BBC. (My voice was ruined from the day before with all my chatting, so I doubt my part will make it to air.) After the Guild Hall opened, we went inside and had a quick meet-and-greet with the other Canadians who had turned up. I then went for lunch with my favourite Ricardians.
After lunch, I went back to the hotel to drop off the books I’d bought for the Buyers Library. As Librarian of the Richard III Society of Canada, I have been allowed to purchase $300 of books, so I have been buying the ones that I don’t think we might get in Canada as easily or cheaply as here in the U.K. However, I am starting to worry about how to get these all back home as I have so many.
I then met a friend who’d journeyed down from Scotland for the day to see King Richard III. I lined up once again at the Cathedral, but as she’d already been in the line for a while, I said that I would not go in with her as I didn’t think it was fair to cut in and see King Richard III once more (one must play fair). My friend and I chatted for the hour and a half it took to get into the Cathedral and had a lovely time catching up.
I then went back to the hotel again and changed for a cocktail reception for the Looking for Richard Project hosted by the American branch. I was lucky to be invited as I am a member of the Canadian Branch’s executive. I got to met Philippa Langley, who was very nice and I thanked her for what she had done. I also met Phil Stone, Chair of the Richard III Society, who was also delightful, the Hammonds, who have done so much for the Society, shake Richard Buckley’s hand, and enjoy myself immensely. I remember sitting there in the midst of Ricardian royalty wondering if I would ever come back to reality. Leicester, my city of dreams…
My final stop of the day was a concert of Ricardian music at a local church, which was lovely and relaxing.
I must admit I am yearning for a quiet moment as my solitary time is spent mainly on this blog, but I don’t want to miss a moment of Ricardian adventure! (I am almost out of origami boars as so many people have been so good to me!)