Names are evocative. We have just spent a week staying in Elephant and Castle in London – it is inner city, grimy, traffic gridlocked but very quirky. Opposite Elephant and Castle station stands the Metropolitan Tabernacle – the place where Spurgeon preached magnificently and had a marvellous ministry.
It took us thirty-five hours to travel from our home in Sydney to Elephant and Castle and included travel by car, plane, train, bus and foot. This included a seven hour stop-over in Abu Dharbi where we walked and walked to stretch our legs. Travelling economy is a bit like sitting in a shoe box and we both had swollen ankles and that grimy, travelly feel.
I cleverly picked up a nasty cold which was unpleasant. Living in a new city and attending a conference requires a certain robustness which I severely lacked, due to this cold. The local Boots and I quickly became acquainted as I bought tissues, more tissues and tablets and …
We stayed in a wonderful apartment up high with glorious views of the city landscape. We travelled from the shortest day to the longest day in the year and at 4am I watched the sun rise above London and at 10 pm watched it set again. I think I could sit and gaze at this view for hours – the old and new structures sit side by side.
A great place to start our excellent adventure! We were most curious about how this suburb acquired its name. We found out that when the Romans came to conquer England, they brought elephants. The nine local kings finally surrendered to the Roman army which was massive. Perhaps there was a castle where the elephants went to live?