January 9, 2017

God Bless Us, Every One!

Back by request, here is this year's Dickens Village!  Each year I arrange the town differently, although I always try to maintain the proper geographical layout of landmarks - The Tower of London must be next to the Thames River, for example...

while the Globe Theatre must be on the other side of the Thames.

If I messed those up, I fear the Ghost of Christmas Past might pay me a visit, instead of Ebenezer Scrooge!  Although, of course, Ebenezer at first had other ideas about the origination of his ghostly visitors...

You may be an undigested bit of beef, a blot of mustard, a crumb of cheese, a fragment of underdone potato. There's more of gravy than of grave about you, whatever you are!

~~Ebenezer Scrooge
All three ghosts chase Ebenezer endlessly around his dismal bedroom all night long!

"But I am sure I have always thought of Christmas time, when it has come round—apart from the veneration due to its sacred name and origin, if anything belonging to it can be apart from that—as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time."

~~Fred Holywell (Ebenezer's nephew)

"...the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely."

~~Fred Holywell 

As I arrange my Village, I think about what shops I would enjoy visiting if I could magically shrink myself and roam the snow drifted streets of Dickens' London.  I am pretty sure I would love browsing through the Antiques shop, while Phil would be next door checking out the stringed instruments!

Or perhaps we would stop by a friend's house for a warm cup of tea and a plate of scones and crumpets?

Lily and I curled up on the couch over the weekend and enjoyed watching the Paddington Bear movie.  Of course we were delighted to see one of the palace guards treating Paddington to a hot cup of tea and a marmalade sandwich!  We checked the guards at my Buckingham Palace after the movie, but alas, not a sticky drop of marmalade jam in sight.

Yes, I do know that Fezziwig's Warehouse would not have been next door to Scrooge and Marley's counting house, but I'm running out of room and sometimes have to bend the story line just a little. 
"Business!' cried the Ghost, wringing its hands again. "Mankind was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, and benevolence, were, all, my business. The deals of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!” 

“For it is good to be children sometimes, and never better than at Christmas, when its mighty Founder was a child Himself.”

The large house on the right is Gad's Hill, Dickens home.  I imagine Mr. Dickens, resplendent in his top hat, is leaving his home arm in arm with his wife to do a reading of A Christmas Carol, while his children enjoy the ice on the nearby pond.

“I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach!” 

“And it was always said of him, that he knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge. May that be truly said of us, and all of us! 

And so, as Tiny Tim observed, God bless Us, Every One!” 

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