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Violating Sanctions

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The London Logs: Hampstead Heath

The Author By Kelly Hayes-Raitt | August 18th, 2012 | Comments No Comments

Besides leisurely lunches, Londoners love their parks. And they use them! They walk on the grass, they nap, they neck, they play soccer. As much as I’ve loved Hyde Park and Greenwich Park, nothing beats Hampstead Heath.
This 790-acre urban park, forest and series of lakes supported thousands of Londoners on this hot Saturday. Yet, my hostess Jill and I walked for over 2 hours and I never felt I was in a crowd. We walked along worn paths across meadows, through a thick forest and over centuries old bridges. It was relaxing and energizing.

I met Jill in Los Angeles just one time when we overlapped in my old (and her old) writing group. She’s a fascinating (and highly intelligent) woman who, at 68, just earned her PhD. Her dissertation challenges the myth of Eve as the temptress behind Original Sin. To research original texts, she learned to read ancient Hebrew!

Our afternoon included a stroll around the quaint village of Hampstead, including a wander by a girlhood home of Daphne du Maurier (The Birds) and wine tasting at a gourmet butcher shop. Our afternoon spilled into the evening when her friend Bob came and treated us to a delicious feast of Chinese takeaway that we enjoyed in Jill’s charming garden. Jill gave me the honor of critiquing her book’s chapter summary and author bio, and graciously reciprocated with insightful comments on my most recent chapter. I’ve missed my writing friends in Mexico, so this was quite a joy!
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Category: London
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