So, yeah, here I am about to head off for some rushed dentistry, a root canal that had to be done asap and I am not happy or feeling great at this moment. But I won’t rush the review of Lessons in Trust by Charlie Cochrane, so there will be a slight delay in posting. I will say that I loved this book and it sent me into paroxysms of delight when researching the 1908 Franco British Exhibition which Orlando and Jonty attend.
See, this is one of my anticipated joys of Charlie Cochrane’s writing, she always includes some wonderful tidbit of information or history I didn’t know about, educating me just enough to make me want to know more. I mean really, how could you resist a 1908 ride with the name The Flip-Flap?
Here is a postcard view of the White City, the location (on 120 acres) of the Franco-British Exhibition in west London. It was called The White City because all the exhibition buildings were painted white. There were “villages” of various nationalities people could visit, like an Irish Village, a Senegalese Village, Think of it like the Las Vegas strip of its day with the Luxor Pyramid, Eiffel Tower , well, you get the drift. Here is a central view:
Then there is the marvel called The Flip-Flap ride. Orlando, Jonty, and Mr. Stewart could get enough of this ride, Think of the most popular rides at Busch Gardens or Six Flags, and they would not come close to the popularity and awe that was The Flip Flap . It’s outline dominated the skyline. Here is a post card of the ride, wouldn’t you just love for a chance to climb on?
And finally, the age of the automobile has arrived and Jonty is full of enthusiasm for this new form of transportation. Jonty has bought a Lagonda and loves it dearly, an affection Orlando doesn’t share. So of course I wanted to know more about what the car looked like that drove Jonty to such heights of prose and poetry. Off to research some more. And I found out that the Lagonda cars were invented by an American named Wilbur Gunn. Wilber had two passions in life, singing and engineering and it was as an opera singer that he came to Britain. But once there he started crafting things from fast boats to motorcycles. In 1904 he progressed from 3 wheeled vehicles to motor cars of which 74 original models were made. Of course, Jonty would have one of them. The name Lagonda? That is Shawnee for Bucks County in Ohio where Wilbur Gunn was from. It is also the name of his father’s company, the Lagonda Corporation which made tube cleaning machinery. I was unable to find any photos of the model Jonty would have had but here is a photo of a 1928 Lagonda. So sporty and elegant I would dearly love to have one as well:
So I hope this will give you a taste of what is to come in my review of Lessons in Trust. Keep these images in mind when I am relating parts of the story. It is a marvelous book so I hope you won’t mind the wait. See you here a little later on, sore jaw not withstanding.