Good King Hal trying the brand new Shepton Beauchamp diet that involves being fed large quantities of a very delicious Thai Green Curry by bespectacled Tasmanian local shop owners in a churchyard, during diamond jubilee celebrations. It is obviously a very niche market.
And so it was back to the daily Henry routine again, but this time to a new school - well, new for me. I was on my way to Radlett in Hertfordshire and a visit to Newberries Primary School. As I was driving from Basildon the vast majority of the journey would be on the dear old M25 and according to the sat nav, if there was no traffic about the entire trip from door to door would only take 35 minutes at most. About an hour and some minutes after leaving Basildon, I finally arrived at the school. My God, the M25 - if ever there was a better advert for not living in the South East I am yet to find it. We stopped, we started, we crawled along, everyone jumped on brakes, we all sped up, then we repeated the entire routine - over and over and over.
I was at the school a bit too early to go in so I found myself sitting outside in the car listening to BBC Radio 2 and the Chris Evans Breakfast Show. Very first thing this morning I had signed into Facebook to see what, if anything was occurring with my "chums" in the wee small hours. Luckily no new fatwas had been issued for me and the only "contact" who seemed to be live was the Chris Evans Show - and was asking the inviting Facebook question - what are you doing? To which at that point, no one had replied. So I simply said I was going to Radlett to be Henry VIII at a school day, all the way from Somerset, my names Good King Hal, goodnight! That sort of thing. Well blow me down, just after the 7am news, Chris Evans reads out my message in full to the delight of the British listening public. Almost immediately my mobile phone starts "pinging" with messages from friends of mine around the country who had obviously heard it! Wa-hay! What a good start to the day!
And things got better - Nude Berries.... I mean Newberries Primary is a lovely school - absolutely charming and I was warmly welcomed by the teacher who had booked me, Sue Rolfe. It was a year 4 group of about 30 children, so quite a small gathering for me. But what they lacked in numbers they more than made up for in stupendous costumes, oodles of enthusiasm and lots of good natured Tudor fun! The morning was partially interrupted by an assembly, but that just really resulted in me having a longer than normal tea break before lunch!
Lunch was that good old staple of primary schools around the country - sausages, potato wedges and greens, but by God it was tasty! The less said about the "fruit salad" the better (for fruit salad read "lots of chopped up apples, two grapes and a mandarin segment floating in what appeared to be a cross between Sunny Delight and industrial floor cleaning fluid"). They should definitely stick to the savoury stuff!
After lunch we had some more good fun and finished with a closely contested jousting tournament. I was expecting an equally close final but as it was, a very competent Gents team simply annihilated the Ladies to clinch a much needed victory for the lads. Our score is now:
GENTLEMEN 18 - 27 LADIES
Have they left it too late? Who knows, but it might be fun finding out. The rest of the week consists of a return to West Pennard near Glastonbury on Wednesday, and then on to Paulton Junior near Bristol on Thursday, before I am back in the south east for a show at the Guildhall in London on Saturday and then a walkabout with the Tudor Roses at the lovely Ingatestone Hall in Essex on the Sunday. If I see you at any of these shows, please say hello!