This is really Friday, but the last few days we have been up in London Jubelizing, and what a time I’ve had. I thought I would leave these 4 days diary until now so here goes…we went by the 10.56 and met Rachel at the station, also the Hughes Gibbs with whom we travelled up as they had reserved a carriage. This we found rather nice as the train was very full. When we arrived Rachel very sweetly took our luggage to the Norfolk as she lives quite close there and Mother and I went off on different business. We then returned to dress for dinner as we were to dine at the Cafe Royal with Poppet and CWM. We started at a quarter to six and arrived there at 7, the crush was so fearful we could scarcely get along. Charlie was looking more beautiful than ever but not very well and so thin, however down at home we will fatten him up well! We enjoyed an excellent dinner and afterwards walked over to La Poupee which I cannot say I found so funny as before. (Operetta by Edmond Audran, which ran very successfully in London in an English translation)
Harry insisted on our coming to his Club and having drinks which we did accordingly, Mother and HC in one hansom and I and CWM in another. As far as he was concerned I think he enjoyed himself immensely but I cannot say that drive amused me as I was the whole time trying to make him see reason which is needless to say he wont. We arrived home at 10 minute to 1 having had a regular spree.
June 22nd, Jubilee Day.
Today at 5.30 we arose from our downeys in order to arrive in time at our seats after a hurried breakfast consisting of a cup of coffee. We tore off with Alice, Rachel and Harry in a bus to Piccadilly- having ridden as far as possible we got off and walked to our seats in crowded and broiling streets which all looked lovely being hung with flags and decorated up to the roofs, the Baroness Burdett-Cootes house being among the finest was all hung with purple and gold. St James Street was wreaths all over and our house in Pall Mall was beautifully decorated with white and mauve orchids and ferns, it was just too beautiful for words.
We arrived before 8 and had to wait until eleven. I cannot describe it properly and exactly because I’ve forgotten how they all came but I know our street was lined with the Manchesters and in the procession first came hundreds of soldiers Colonial and English, next all aide-de-camps, equerries etc and then the Royal carriages with all foreign representatives, the Royal family and lastly the Queen – in her carriage was the Empress Frederick and the dear Princess of Wales who as usual was looking sweet, the queen looked very well and the cheers were simply dense as she drove along, people went nearly mad with excitement and the street was a perfect sight with waving hats and handkerchiefs. The Prince of Wales, Duke of Cambridge and Duke of Connaught rode beside her and her carriage was drawn by five or six pairs of horses almost buried in gold trappings and led by men in most gorgeous livery. When it was once started it didn’t take long and the whole show was past us soon after 12 o’clock. I am indeed glad I saw it, as of course none of the present generation will ever see such a sight again.
I must not forget to add that we (Rachel and I) had an excellent lunch and made the acquaintance of a most charming young man who was most attentive to us and came and sat with us after it was over and talked for quite a long time. He was nice looking, fair, and tall and said he lived in Blackheath. I wonder if he knows the Wilkinsons and if we shall ever see him again!
As soon as it was possible to move we all went to the park for a while, and at 4 we started to tea at the Oriental club when after awhile we were joined by the Butlers, Uncle Walter, (and others). When we had eaten and stuffed as much as possible we strolled down Bond Street and each took our different ways.
June 23rd, Wednesday
So having done my duty in describing yesterday I must begin on this early before breakfast. Mother left for Plymouth and I by my little own self sat me down to wait for the Castlemans who were coming to fetch me for the Academy. Accordingly they arrived three strong including Jack Moon who is such an amusing fellow. The Academy was a sight to see and I don’t know who laughed so much as I did over “Loves Baubles”, a more grotesque production I have never yet seen. We all had convulsions and behaved so badly, however rotten show as it is I am glad I went and mean to go again when I am up for Lords. (Wynne is referring to a painting by John Byam Liston Shaw, known as Byam Shaw. Apparently mirth greeted some of his other work, some of which appears to be lost).
When I returned I found the beautiful Charles awaiting me and we had lunch together after which he took me down to the New Gallery which is on the whole better than the Academy I think. Poor Owl isn’t in the best of spirits I fear and every time I say anything I seem to put my foot in it. I hope he is not going to be depressed because of a certain affair as that would be foolish in the last extreme. In the evening as I was sitting reading my weird and beastly task (this appears to be the sole educational element of her life at that time), when all of a sudden I heard a voice say “come out into Onslow Gardens” and looking up saw R and Mr Moon, so out I went and we sat out for over an hour smoking and shrieking. The illuminations were lovely all round and I suppose in the city they must have been exquisite.