"In Flanders fields the poppies blow Between the crosses, row on row, That mark our place; and in the sky The larks, still bravely singing, fly Scarce heard amid the guns below." ~ John McRae

Hello stranger!
It seems my summer sabbatical from daily blogging 
spilled over into September...

and then October...
evidenced by my InstaFUN memories,
all of the sudden,
here we are hugging the middle of November.
When darkness arrives quite early to pull the shades down on daylight. 
So for those of you, like me, 
who prefer long sunny days, 
a quick peek at my Top Five Ways to Light Up Your Life might be in order.

Meanwhile, in all of our gallivanting around over the last few months, 
the one place Ren Man and I have not visited in a while is London. 
Not since we were there back in June for 
the Ceremony of the Keys at the Tower of London.  
You too can attend, but there are steps to take well in advance.
A colleague of Ren Man's has an armed forces buddy who lives on the grounds,
 and kindly provided an invitation for us to attend the 700 year old tradition of escorting the warden 
as he locks the gates of the Tower and grounds. 
Much to my surprise, 38 retired officers, yeoman warders, or Beefeaters,
and their families live within the fortress.
Their official title is...
Yeomen Warders of Her Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress the Tower of London. 

As we walked around the grounds before the ceremony,
Ren Man was busy with canon photo ops.
Ahhh…the memories of summer.
These photos were taken around 9:00 p.m. 
before the whole process began at exactly 9:52 p.m. 

After the locking of the gates,
and all was secure,
they did let us out...
and dusk had blanketed the city.
The Ceremony of the Keys is worth the effort of planning ahead for an invite.

Unfortunately, by the time we visit London again in December,
the amazing Poppy installation at the Tower of London
Photo:  Daily Mail
will be dismantled.
Hundreds of thousands of ceramic poppies, by artist Paul Cummins, and stage designer Tom Piper,
have been 'planted' in the Tower's moat over the last few months 
with the final number reaching 888,246 today
November 11th
the end of 'the war to end all wars'...
Remembrance Day in the UK.
One poppy for each British soldier 
who died during WWI is quite a visual.

Across the pond,
we mark today's importance with Veteran's Day
as we honor all who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
Thank you daddy
and the millions of others who have served.

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