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John Clayton: Londoon Tour 3
Here's Why You Should See
This 700 Year Old Ceremony

London's East End is NOW Fantastic;
Plus What Makes a 5 Star Hotel Superb
By John Clayton
Part four of a five part series

ost people who go to England have heard about the "Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace," but what about the "Ceremony of the Keys?" Of all the intriguing things I've seen around the world, and even though I'm originally from that British city, this is one of the most "pageantry full," events you'll find in Great Britain.

The Tower of London's Fascinating Ceremony of the Keys

It takes place at night at (as they say on their website) "Precisely at 9.30pm," and as our media group were not able to attend the nighttime schedule, our tour guide Pat Holmes, and the clever folks at Visit Britain, were kind enough for us to see it in the morning.

As you watch it, it's fascinating to realize that it has been done without interruption, every night for over 700 years. Yes, seven hundred years. Wow, talk about British traditions!!! The Tower of London is another well established icon of that destination, and key's ceremony is the traditional locking up of the Tower, and the importance placed on securing the fortress for the night. Even though the King or Queen no longer resides at the Tower, it is also home to the world famous Crown Jewels, and many other priceless valuables connected to British royalty.

Tickets are free, but due to the unique aspect of what takes place, getting those reservations can take a few months - so plan on making those reservations NOW.

Here is how this marvelous historical experience takes place. The Chief Yeoman Warder (see also is escorted around the Tower locking up all the doors until (and this is very dramatic) he is "challenged" by the sentry (garbed in that so British red colored military uniform, and the large black Busby hat) who he must answer to BEFORE he completes the task. Every night at precisely 21.52 the Chief Yeoman Warder of the Tower comes out of the Byward Tower dressed in that marvelous red and black Beefeater outfit, and he's carrying a candle lantern in one hand, and the Queen's Keys in the other. He then walks to what's called The Traitor's Gate (don't you just love those names!) and meets either two or four members of the British duty regiment of Foot Guards. They then escort him throughout the ceremony. One solider takes the lantern and they walk up in step together to the outer gate. All the guards and sentries on duty salute the Queen's Keys as they pass.

the writer with two of the Tower of London's Beefeaters
John stands with two of the Tower of London's famous Beefeaters.

Then in an almost movie type historical setting, the Warder locks the outer gate, and they walk back to lock the gates of the Middle and Byward Towers. All then return to the Traitor's Gate ( where a sentry awaits them.

Sentry: "Halt, Who goes there?"

Chief Yeoman Warder: "The Keys."

Sentry: "Whose Keys?"

Warder: "Queen Elizabeth's Keys."

Sentry: "Pass Queen Elizabeth's Keys and All's Well."

All four men then walk to the (here's another of those wonderful and very colorful British names) Bloody Tower archway and up towards the boardwalk where the main Guard is
drawn up. The chief Yeoman Warder and the escort halt at the foot of the steps, and the officer in charge gives the command to the Guard and escort to Present Arms.

Then the Chief Yeoman Warder moves 2 paces forward, raises his Tudor bonnet (hat) high in the air, and calls out "God Preserve Queen Elizabeth." The guard then answers, "Amen," and at that time precisely (!) the clock chimes 10pm. And the Duty Drummer sounds the Last Post on his bugle. The Chief Warder then takes the Keys back to the Queen's House and the Guard is dismissed. At 10.05pm all those present (that's the tourists) are themselves escorted out to the Exit.

the Chief Yeoman Warder walks towards the Foot Guards and his escort at the tower of London

the Chief Yeoman Warder being escorted away with the keys in his hands

sign at the entrance to the Bloody Tower

the left hand side of the Tower of London showing animal figures on a ledge
The above four photos: In the first one the Chief Yeoman Warder walks towards the Foot Guards and his escort. The next photo shows him being escorted away (and the keys are plainly visible in his left hand) the last but one photo shows the entrance to the Bloody Tower. The final photo shows the left hand side of the Tower (which is over on the right) and the animals on a ledge. These were a key part of the ritual in the days of the years around 1235, when King Henry III received some lions from Emperor Frederick II. These animals (replicas, NOT real ones!) played a major role in those days, as they represented the wealth and strength of the King.

For an intriguing explanation of what the term "Yeoman Warder" means, plus finding out more about the often used word Beefeater, see a marvelous description at wiki/Yeoman_Warders For another insight into "A true sign of the times," in July of 2007 a British military service member called Monica Cameron became the very first female Yeoman Warder in the history of this previously all male dominated institution. It tends to be a somewhat involved process of getting tickets, but you can either phone 44 (0) 20 3166 6278 or for American visitors go to Another idea would be to go to the Visit Britain website at

No Canaries in Canary Wharf!

skyscrapers dominate the skyline of Canary Wharf, West India Docks, Isle of Dogs, East London
Photo courtesy Visit Britain.

Take a fast look at the photo above, and might your immediate impression be that it's the Hudson River, and that's part of the New York skyline in the background? Well that was mine too when I saw it, and it illustrates very dramatically a vibrant, totally "new" area of London called Canary Wharf. The name too is unique, because many folks think of the bird, and say Canary. But as it relates to this part of London it is pronounced CANNERY Wharf. Go figure!

mother and child gazing at skyscrapers in Canary Wharf, East London
Photo courtesy Visit Britain.

It's in what used to be the East part of the city, and when I was growing up in London, any trip to that section could be fraught with danger, as it was the Docklands area where ships from around the world loaded and unloaded their cargoes.

It was also the area that in WW2, was heavily bombed by the German Luftwaffe, and it fell into further disrepute after the war, growing even more run down, and by 1980 all the docks closed. It is now one of THE in places to live, work and enjoy a new sense of luxury, opulence and good times. Many of buildings are skyscrapers, and it has become a bustling and marvelous place in which to enjoy a new aspect of London. I urge you to visit Canary Wharf. It is home to one of the UK's tallest buildings (shades of New York!) and about 90,000 people work in the area. As a former Brit I love the fact it's located on the historic "Isle of Dogs."

For more information about this intriguing part of London, Google it, and type "Canary Wharf, London," for a list of riveting websites. Enjoy!

The Joys of a 5 Star Hotel!

main area just above the lobby of The Corinthia Hotel showing huge chandelier

In all my years on 3 top LA radio stations with my travel show "John Clayton's Travel With A Difference," I was always interested in the hotels I stayed in, when I was invited on travel media press trips. I say that as all such trips are courtesy of the folks who invite you, and THEY decide where you'll stay. So I wondered where British Airways and Visit Britain would put us. It was a superb new hotel called "The Corinthia."

It's been my experience in traveling the world that more often than not, how a hotel FIRST appeals to you, is the image you'll retain for the rest of your trip. That often means how you are greeted; what sort of importance hotel staff place on the word service; what sort of food is served in their restaurants; and as far as I'm concerned (and this may sound strange) how comfortable your bed is.

As you see from this photo (above right) of the Corinthia's main area just above the Lobby, it is spectacular. Which is how I found their service.

a food selection in a restaurant at The Corinthia Hotel

There were several instances where I needed to cash money on my credit card, making an overseas phone call or just enjoying my breakfast. Everywhere I turned, the service was instantaneous, and very efficient. As you see from the above photo of "breakfast offerings," (and this was only a tiny part of that feast!) it was stunning in its variety, and all served to perfection in the restful and relaxing Northall Restaurant.

thinly sliced salmon on plate at The Corinthia Hotel

The photo here looks like a sort of painted light red on my plate, but it is actually incredibly thinly sliced, truly taste tempting salmon served to us shortly after our arrival, when we met the hotel's very personable GM, Matthew Dixon. I've seen salmon served a hundred or more ways in my lifetime, but this was perfection personified.

dining area inside The Corinthia Hotel

When, as that old cliché phrase says, "When only the best will do," the Corinthia fits that to the proverbial T. It was opened in April this year; and is already acclaimed as one of London's finest 5 star luxury hotels. The building itself was "born" in Victorian times, and was once the prestigious Hotel Metropole, and (I love this) in WW2 it was one of the British Ministry of Defense buildings.

view of the Thames River, London from The Corinthia Hotel

This photo was taken in one of the hotel's top class suites, the Corinthia Hotel is only seconds away from the famous River Thames, the Bank Underground station, and the boarding pier for Thames River Clippers, and is conveniently located almost in the center of London's theater district.

In our fifth and final feature in this series, you'll read about the most fascinating aviation museum in Europe, plus why the best smoked salmon comes from London, and some thoughts on British trains today, and a marvelous bit of rolling trivia from Wimbledon.

Related Articles:
London Tour Part 3; London Tour, Part 2; Buckingham Palace; The Ritz, London; An American Student in London; Yorkminster, England

Name: Required
E-mail: Required
City: Required

For "Ride With John Aboard Europe's Most Dazzling and Luxurious Train":

You and your trains and boats and planes, you always make me want to get off my more-than-ample behind and travel! Thank you again for yet another vicarious adventure.

Richard F., Saugerties, NY

Yes, Richard, THANK you for your kind words, so delighted you (with all YOUR worldly travels) enjoyed it. Travel journalism has given me the opportunity to be aboard and relish, some of the best and finest in train travel. The Orient Express was THE thrill, THE total enjoyment, of the best of the best. So good to hear from you.

From "Always training John."

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For "Harry Potter's 'Hogwarts Express'":

Loved the Hogwarts Express article.

Nancy – Hawaii

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For "Tantalizing Takeoffs, Trains, Trips and Tennis":

Dear John,

Lovely story as always, and your photos are superb. You do have a way with words.

Corinna – Washington DC

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That is indeed an interesting and enlightening article. I will remember how to get away from the airport and to London proper. Wimbledon looks spectacular; I suppose they're going to use some of it for the Olympics?

Mary J. Purcell – London

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John - excellent as usual and full of interesting details and anecdotes. Masterful writing!

Agnes Huff – London

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For "Exciting Adventures in London — By Way of San Diego":

Hello John,

I enjoyed reading your article on London by way of San Diego, it was a fun and informative read. You flew past Carlsbad on your way to San Diego. Have you visited Carlsbad lately? When you have a couple of days available I would like to invite you to visit Carlsbad. You can get to Carlsbad by train as well. I look forward to part 2 of the article.

Frankie Laney – Carlsbad, CA

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Thank you very much for your story to me and Old Town Trolley Tours. I am happy you had a nice tour and that we were referred to you! I enjoyed reading your story and can't wait until I forward this email to my Manager and the General Manager tomorrow,

Yoli – San Diego, CA

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That is wonderful! I really enjoyed Part one of five....awesome writing skills you have!! A true gift!!

Best regards,

Agnes Huff, PhD – Los Angeles, CA

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Great stuff, thanks for sending this through and the other emails – great read…

Val Austin, Senior Visit Britain International Press Visits officer, London, UK

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As a subscriber to Traveling Boy, I love reading your stories John. I send them through to my Mum as she appreciates them too!

Lisa, Australia

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For "Must See Attraction" in Northern Spain:

Hi John! Loved your article and Castro de Santa Tegra is added to my "want to see" list. Would love to visit Portugal and Spain and this added to the desire.You are a marvelous source of information and I'm sure Travel Boy will appreciate your experience and information. I look forward to reading more of your articles.

Nel Stingley, Hermosa Beach

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Mr. Clayton,

Thank you for your intriguing article on Castro de Santa Tegra. Quite literally, I have never even heard of the place, but it it is now officially on my 'bucker list.'

Brock Alston, Boulder, CO

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I saw that! That was so cool! I wasn't expecting it, so when I started reading it I was thinking, "Wow, another person wrote something similar to what I was saying to John!" Hahahaha! I didn't recognize it at first. :) That was really nice - thank you for answering me regarding the UK. I'm going to buy a travel book and check out the places you were talking about. Your experience about Normandy got me appreciating visiting battle "destinations," if you will, so I'd like to check out a couple of those that you mentioned.

Always a pleasure,

Cristina Lovett
Museum Educator, The Banning Museum

My dear Cristina,

If you go to the current Traveling Boy website, and click on my current story about crazy signs around the world, at the end of the piece you’ll see your question and my answer/suggestions about your travels.


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John, your ardent love of travel and discovery, seem to be the grist for your excellent writing skills.

Having just returned from a visit to France, to visit old friends, and enjoy that lovely country, it is not hard to comprehend how travel truly spawns, witin all of us, inspiration out the "gazoo."

Terry Hare

My dear Terry,

Thank you so much for your wonderful and very, very encouraging words. They made my day - hey, it made my month!!!



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(The letter below was sent in response by a reader to the article A Most Unusual Tourist Attraction)

Did you ever serve in the army? Were you in a combat zone? This affinity/hobby of war for the sake of the competitive and challenge is beyond me. I served 3 years (mandatory) in the Israeli army and was only involved in it while I had to be there (even that seems like too much). This article is inspiring to me because of the answer of the cemetery official and the figures of dead on both sides. I can not understand saluting to a person who did his best to kill as many people as possible. If you live out of fear or brainwash you will never stop killing and harming. Does that deserve a salutation or pity?

On Behalf Of Etan, USA

Etan, Greetings:

Many thanks for your thoughtful email with regard to my Traveling Boy story about my visit to the German cemetery in Normandy. To answer your first question, yes I did serve in the Army although NOT in combat. I‘ve been in this great country, the USA, for 48 years and was born in London, so when I was 18 I had to spend time in the Army doing (what was then called) National Service. I was in North Africa and Malta. Although I wished I’d been in combat, I never was. As a travel journalist I was, obviously, very happy that you found what I wrote inspiring, based on the comments of the French manager of the cemetery, and of the tragedy of how many young lives were lost on all sides due to that dreadful conflict.

He, the old, guy, was a fascinating individual, and I really enjoyed chatting to him. I’ve always had a (and let’s call it what it is) fascination with war, and the military, and have watched (almost!) every show on the Military channel, the History Channel and the Discovery Channel, countless times. I’ve also been to many WW2 sites around the world. Yes, I agree with your view that war is terrible, but what if we – the Allies - had not done anything about Hitler? Could we, or should we have allowed him to run amok around Europe and the rest of the world? I think not.

As terrible as war is, it seems human beings cannot find another way to settle certain problems – although I’m hugely encouraged by the approach of the EU and how so many people now realize that fighting is NOT the answer. So I live in hope war might be a thing of the past, but I doubt it.

My saluting M. Wittman’s grave. As I stood there I was, to be totally honest, in awe of the fact that I was standing above the grave of this incredible Nazi tank Ace who was the top, or among the top scoring tank commanders in the Panzers. I saluted not who he was, nor – certainly – what he stood for – but for his talents as a tank tactician. Most British and American historians of that war, and who are really interested in such things, will confirm to you that whatever else one might think about Wittman, he was a brilliant tank commander. That, and only that, was what I was recognizing.

For 16 successful years – 1992 to 2007 – I was on three top LA radio stations (KABC, KKGO/KMZT and the KNX) with my show “John Clayton’s Travel with A Difference” and I always enjoyed hearing from my listeners - even though at times what they sent me might not have been what I was expecting. In other words, I found it fascinating to hear both the upbeat, offbeat and down beat. When I wrote what did I knew that it would generate some responses like yours. While I do not (NOT!!) advocate TBoy's writers' doing stories that are provocative, the fact remains that human beings (whether they admit it or not) like controversy - witness Glenn Beck, O'Reilly etc and of course R. Limbaugh. What I am saying is that if you, as the writer, feel strongly about something, you MUST put those thoughts down in your story. While I abhor all things that guys like Wittman did as a Nazi, the fact is he was a brilliant tactician.

I must share with you yet again how delighted I was – and still am – by your words, and I’m so glad you wrote and said what you did, and that you took the time to share your feelings. I do hope you can – at the very least – accept my thoughts and ideas that I’ve laid out in this email on this very sensitive subject. Perhaps even more so, for someone from Israel.

With best regards,.


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John, Your refection on how young those can be who die in war reminded me of the A.E. Houseman poem at the entrance to the Fighter Command museum in London (beside the photo and engine of the RAF fighter pilot who died in the Battle of Britain): "Here dead lie we because we did not choose to live and shame the land from which we sprung. Life, to be sure, is nothing much to lose; But young men think it is, and we were young."

Eric, San Diego, CA

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Ringo and Deb can have their Oasis - this to me smacks of heavenly travel - thanks for the article and photos.

Brenda - Richland, WA

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Hi John,

I have read a few articles about R for Robert, but yours by far is the best. My grandfather was co-pilot John Slatter (my Dad's dad). It is so neat to hear about ancestry. There is actually a book published called R for Robert. Another interesting detail.... I live in NH, and in 1985 a lawyer with many interests from Concord,NH and a sonar exploration company from Salem, NH were the ones who started the project to pull the Wellington out of the Loch. I am always trying to find information about that side of our family, and love to read articles such as yours. Thanks for the piece.....

Cyndi - Raymond, NH

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Greetings my dear Cyndi

I was born in Kensington in London, and although I've been in this great place called the USA for 48 amazing years, if it is still true that Brits ARE noted for understatement, let me tell you that your email not only made my day, but gave me a huge, huge thrill.

I am a WW2 aficionado, and had one of the biggest "thrill sensations" of my life, when the French government invited me to the 60th Anniversary of D-Day on June 6th, 2004. In fact, I sat 50 feet from world leaders like Bush, Putin, and Queen Elizabeth. When I went to Loch Ness and heard (and saw!) that a wonderful Wellington had crashed there, and that it also pin pointed WHERE it had happened, I was in nirvana. I stood on the side of the road and, as I gazed out at the cold and forbidding waters that day, I was instantly transported back to the time and day when it happened - and in my imagination I saw and heard it all. So to get your amazing and (to me) riveting letter, was and is totally amazing - and wonderful.


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Hello John,

Ed Boitano (who I met on a Star Clipper cruise in the Mediterranean last July) has sent me a link to your above article on the 'Little Steam Trains of North Wales' which I read with interest. One of the photo captions mentions a sign above the train in Welsh, which says: FFORD ALLAN GOFYNN'R DEITHWYR DDEFNYDDIO'R BONT I GROESI'R LEIN. Rougly translated it is a Notice to travellers to use the bridge to cross the line. In Welsh bont is a bridge or archway, Groesi is a crossing, Lein a line, (in this case a rail line or alternative it could mean a line-out (as in Rugby football - but that's another game!) Although born in Wales as Ed may tell you my Welsh is very limited, but trust this answers your question and it amuses! Kind regards,

John Dann - Hove, East Sussex, England

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How wonderful to know that people in Hove (for heavens sakes!) are reading Traveling Boy. I remember -- with much fondness --- visiting Hove during my early years in the UK - charming and very British, so I hope it is still that way and that it has NOT been over run with neon signs and crass commercialism.

Thanks too for your comment about the Welsh wording on the bridge. There were so many wonderful things that intrigued me about Wales, and one of them was - and is! - the language. I mean you'd see this long series of words in Welsh, and then underneath it would give the British translation, and it'd very often be only one or two words. I attach a photo I took of a road sign to illustrate my point. In any event, thanks for your kind words and interesting feedback. MOST appreciated.


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Dear John,

Your website is fantastic. I am building a Messerschmitt BF109E Model in Balsa Wood and I have a problem in finding the numbers of its original colour (BF 109E-3 with a Donald Duck painted at rear of Romania.)I've been looking around and tried to see through the internet but can't find any help. Please if you have this information and can help me, I would appreciate it very much and I thank you in advance I send you my best regards,

Philip Vella - St. Julians, Malta

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Hi Philip,

Very nice to get your email and I'm so glad you like what you've seen and read on Traveling boy. Sadly, I do not have the answer to your question either. I do, however, have one suggestion and idea.

Among all my aviation books form that period, I have one called "Aircraft of World War 2." It is published by Chartwell Books, 114 Northfield Avenue, Edison, New Jersey 08837, USA. The editorial and design was done by Amber Books at Bradley Close, 74-77 White Lion Street, London N1 9PF, England. Their website is

As the above book is jam packed with fascinating facts about all the aircraft from WW2, I feel that if you write to both of them with your question, they might be able to help you. The book is written by Robert Jackson and he seems to be a mountain of information. Google his name and see what comes up.


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Hello John, I don't know if you remember me or not but my name is Cliff Pleggenkuhle, Jr. I flew for Cal from 1964 to 2003. I got the article you did on Wes Coss from the Cal Chief Pilots office. The communications people forwarded the article to them. Anyway, I sent the article to the Golden Contrails editor and he is going to include the article in our next edition. The contrails is the publication of our retired group the Golden Eagles.

I have read the book and it was great. It would make a good movie. I also sent your article to my old banker, who is a airplane and WWII nut and I think he is sending you an article about the underground in WWII. He writes articles of interest in a weekly local paper in Liberty County, TX.

I will quit rambling and just wanted to let you know your fine article on Wes will be appreciated by many.


Cliff Pleggenkuhle, Jr., Huffman, TX

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Sir...A good friend, a captain with Continental Airlines, Cliff Pleggenkuhle sent me your website. Indeed, your story about the great escape (albeit brief) was one that should be shared. Chuck Yeager also made his way to Spain and his story was somewhat similar. But it takes a real writer to set the plan in motion (and I really mean...motion) as you have done.

I'm taking the liberty to send you a copy of my newspaper column about another hero that I have known. Ironically, your mention of the escape of Wes being true can set aside the Great Escape of Stalag whatever. The untrue part that it was led by an American pilot when actually it was a Dutch pilot named Bob Vanderstock and others. When I went to Belgium with my friend Pieter Cramerus, a Dutch ace who flew Spitfires during WWII for the RAF, he told me about his friend Vanderstock's escape. Then, he introduced to me this fantastic former agent of the Belgium Underground who married his cousin. The rest is in the article. I hope you enjoy it. Thanks again for your expertise in writing the word.

Bob Jamison, Dayton, TX

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You're getting some serious journalism on your site! Literary indeed. Award-winning potential, and I'm not just talking about YOUR stuff!!

Terry Cassel

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Of all the stories I've written in my lifetime, I cannot think of any one that gave me as much pleasure and joy, in writing the piece about Wes. It required all my best "creative juices," and also - truly thrilling for me - gave me a marvelous opportunity to put words together about battle, about flying and about military history. Knowing how important editing is to any story, and to a reader's enjoyment of same (in other words it has to flow freely and be very concise) I wrote the article in one sitting, and then re-wrote it six times.

I have no idea who this Terry Cassel is, but I cannot tell you how thrilled and how, yes overwhelmed I am, by his brief (editing again proving that less is more) comments about my story. Thank you Ed for giving me this opportunity to put THIS story on the amazing Traveling Boy website. And Wes, thank you for allowing me to chat with you and glean from you (and then your book!) all the fascinating stuff that came together as my article.

Thanks must also go to my wife and my two daughters who have always believed in me, and who (as Father's Day has just passed) gave me the most wonderful and heart wrenching Father's Day cards imaginable. I have always told them that anything is achievable and possible, and that one should NEVER give up. Keep on knocking on doors and even if 20 are closed in your face, if you find yourself knocking on the 21st one, that'll very probably will be THE one that opens up for you - and demonstrates that your determination to never take NO as any sort of answer is a key part of success.

Finally, all of this has only been made reality, by my living and working in this place called the United States of America. Thank you all for everything.


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Thanks so much for sharing this great story - I am going to copy it to VB who runs the Travel Journalism awards.

Fiona Stewart, Edinburgh

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Nice piece. I adore Scotland, wish I could live there someday...

Chris, Pawling, NY

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I enjoyed reading your piece on France; it was very informative. Unfortunately, I've spent very little time in France; it's more to the favor of my oldest brother. But your words painted a good picture.

Danny Simon

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Hi John, I am a friend of your daughter Heidi and she sent me your link so I could read your articles. I have heard so many things about you from her but reading your article I can see why she is so proud to call you her Dad. Your writing transported me to Chewton Glen, I hope to one day be lucky enough to stay there!

Frances Crymble, Auckland, NZ

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You describe a city on wheels - er, wings - and an absolutely perfect way to travel. SHOWERS & FLOWERS! Amazing! I love that your passion for all-things-aviation comes through in this story about an almost unbelievable airplane. Thanks for breaking the news in such an engaging way!

Richard Frisbie, Saugerties, New York

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Good article on the biggest commercial airplane in the world. Very interesting. Love your easy personal writing style. Can't wait to get inside one of these sky monsters. I wonder how they will ever recoup their expenses. But then again, with the Arab nations overflowing with cash I shed no tear of sympathy. If anyone has to beta test these babies, it should be them.

Peter Paul, South Pasadena

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Dear John Clayton:

Thank you very much for your enthusiastic report on the Zeppelin Museum. I am very pleased you like it as we -- the people working there -- do. We try to collect everything on Zeppelins and to make it available to visitors. Only the number of visitors I would like to correct: since the opening in 1996 we hosted more than 3,600,000 people. So we are among the most visited museums in Germany.Thank you very much again -- and kindest regards,

Ursula ZellerDirector

Hi John,

I know the places you describe in your aticle, and I usually feel exactly the same as you did, when I wander in the countryside - I live in this region. How could this places, so peaceful today, be such a hell for some men? But if you're attentive to many details in the ground and the scenary, finding shell shrapnels and tumb stones for example, then you begin to understand

Thank you John.

Florence L.
City: France


It's as if I was there with you. I grew up with Sgt York comic books. To see the real place where a real person so heroically saved the day is something I never expected to experience. Thanks for the historical detail and great photos.

Richard Frisbie
City: Saugerties


As a history and Churchill buff, I found your article to be chilling. I hope someday to make it to the museum. Is the CWR at all part of the Imperial War Museum? I don't know how I missed it in my only trip to London back in 2000.

Thanks again,

Gary Avrech
City: Santa Monica

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Hey Gary....

Yes it is. If you go online and click on the IWM website, you'll find out even more information about this intriguing museum. Thanks for your times and words.



Very excited to see your appearance in the Boitano Blog. I don't know who the hell all those Boitanos are, but I know who John Clayton is! Hey, I wrote a note on your column on the Cabinet War Rooms. I'll be a regular reader. I certainly hope all are well and happy on the Peninsula and that all your travels are still terrific.

Ed P


I urge anyone traveling to London to put the Cabinet War Rooms high on their "must see" list. All who've taken my advice have thanked me, just like I thanked you, and do so again, for recommending the museum to me years ago. But then, it's just one of many suggestions of yours, every one brilliant!

Port St. Lucie, FL

Stay tuned.

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