Thursday, October 27, 2011

A Little Place in the Country

One of Winston Churchill's ancestors built this house to reward himself for winning a battle at a place called Blenheim. This was at a time when being a general could make you very rich. If you look at Eisenhower's modest house near Gettysburg you see that generaling has gotten less remunerative.

Blenheim Palace is larger than the house the Queen lives in. We visited Blenheim some years ago. The thing I remember is Winston's toy soldier collection which is displayed in a glass case in the hall. He was born there because his mother happened to be visiting at the time. Winston's people were poor relations. He wrote bestsellers for a living. He wasn't given huge sums or a palace for saving democracy. When he was P.M. he lived in a poky little house in a side street in Whitehall.

I classify people into two categories: cabin rich and cabin poor, depending on whether they have a place in the country. We do not have one, but I've been known to draw pictures in exchange for weekends. The Duke of Marlborough hasn't called to invite us yet.

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