Last week in a Ladybits blog entry, Mrs. Anke posted a photo of Caro Spinette and some of her hand painted porcelain creations. I went slightly bonkers over this teapot and said as much in a comment.
The next thing I knew—and I mean that literally—she wrote to me privately, asking for my mailing address so that she could send it to me! Try as I might to make her give up her address so that I could send her something in return, I failed utterly.
The generosity of both Bettina and her husband Christopher (the now-famous Mr. Anke, who keeps a number of blogs and sites and who is an inspired photographer) humbles and amazes me. It was only last year that he sent me my beloved "I ♥ Royal TW" tee shirt, which I supposedly won in a contest. Ahem...
I'm magnetically, desperately drawn to Tunbridge Wells, an attraction I've come to attribute to genetic DNA, because my Waller forebears hail from there, the family manse being none other than Groombridge Place, more recently of Pride and Prejudice with Kiera Knightly fame. Whenever I acquire something from the Wells, I sense just a little bit more gravity pulling me home. Hey, Those Waller brothers left England, not I! If I'd been around back then I'd have have told them, "Not me, squire. I'm staying home. I'm not getting on that bloody boat!"
The teapot is part of the Elmer collection, the pattern inspired by Elmer the Elephant, the patchwork-skinned main character of a British children's book series by David McKee. I didn't know all that then. In fact I'd never heard of Elmer. I couldn't even tell if the pattern was of a crazy houndstooth check, or puzzle pieces and, what's more, I didn't care. I thought it was beautiful. But I never imagined I'd be brewing a pot of chai spice in it scarcely a week later! I love it so much in fact, I'm post this picture of it in color instead of my (new) standard black and white. Soon, I'm going to order two matching cups and saucers. Then, in good time, I'm going to get the Ganesh Bowl.
If you haven't yet checked out the Anke blogs, I encourage you to do so. Between Mrs. Anke's delightfully humorous writing and Mr. Anke's warm and lucid photography, there's little wonder why this young couple have become so well-known and so well-loved by their readers and the people of Tunbridge Wells. They've certainly grown very close to my heart.