While working the check-out desk at the library in 2011 a patron started gushing about a television series called Downton Abbey. She explained that the series was about an aristocratic family in England, they had servants, etc. I listened to the patron while thinking the series didn’t sound like my cup of tea. Just when I was thinking that the patron said, “You would really like it. I just know you would.” That comment surprised me especially since I didn’t know the patron at all, and they didn’t know me. Inwardly I thought, “Challenge accepted.” From that moment on I was prepared to hate Downton Abbey.
When Downton Abbey’s first season came out on DVD I put a hold on it at the library and finally one day I sat down ready to hate its guts. But I didn’t hate its guts. I absolutely freaking loved its guts!
I loved following the lives of the Grantham and Crawley families and their servants. The series began with the death of Downton Abbey’s heir in the sinking of the Titanic and then delved into securing a new heir, the distant and quite modern cousin Matthew Crawley. Lord Grantham is of course interested in marrying off his daughters, which backfired on more than one occasion. Lady Mary, Lord Grantham’s eldest daughter, is my favorite of the upstairs characters. She can be selfish, arrogant and cold, but she feels very deeply and cares about the servants downstairs.
And then there are the servants, the people who make it possible for the aristocratic family to enjoy the cushy life they are accustomed to. They are the grunt laborers who spend the majority of their time and lives cleaning, primping, cooking, and caring for their masters. There are so many great servant characters but my favorite is Daisy, the scullery maid. She is young and unsure, but a completely genuine spirit who never fails to make me laugh.
So now that I am an official Downton fan I thought it might be fun for other fans of the series to take part in a very special High Tea at Downton Abbey on Sunday, May 19 from 2:00-3:00pm. Participants will get a taste of Downton Abbey life with a special English high tea at the library. Tina Jesson from Tina’s Old Traditional English Tea Kitchen will talk about life during the time of Downton Abbey, etiquette, and master/servant relations during the post-Edwardian era.
Participants will enjoy scrumptious scones served with several jams and clotted cream, a variety of delicious sandwiches, as well as English Breakfast Tea with cream served straight from the pot. Attendees are encouraged to dress up and bring their own tea cup and saucer. Registration for this event can be done at the main Desk in the library beginning April 1. A registration fee of $13 will be accepted at the time of sign-up.
If this sounds like your cup of tea (pun intended) please give me a call and I can point you in the right direction!