OXFORD, ENGLAND – If there’s anywhere in the world that looks more beautiful than medieval England, on a mild summer’s day, I don’t know it.

We visited Oxford today. Here are the kids looking for fish in the River Cherwell. That’s Magdalen College (founded in 1458) in the background…


Looking for fish in front of Magdalen College

A Postcards reader, Chris, is an Oxford tourist guide. He wrote to us a few weeks ago and invited us to come on his walking tour.

Here’s Chris showing us the famous streetlight outside Brasenose College that inspired C.S. Lewis to write The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe


The streetlight outside Brasenose College that inspired Lewis’ fantasy novel

A few yards further down, we found the wardrobe door and Aslan, the lion…


Penny (8) finds the wardrobe door from the novel

We walked more than six miles around Oxford today.

“I’m really impressed how well your children have held up,” said our guide.

“They’re used to it,” I replied.

Here we are looking at the Radcliffe Camera, built in the 1740s, and containing a science library…


Kate and the kids admire the Radcliffe Camera, built in the 18th century

And here we are walking around the quad at Magdalen College…

Penny walks around the quad at the 563-year-old Magdalen College

Seeing England Like Tourists

Here in England, we’re trying to behave like international tourists, and see as much of England as we can. It’s a great education for us, and it gives me something to write about.

There aren’t many other international tourists in the U.K. at the moment due to COVID-19, so we pretty much have the tourist sites to ourselves.

There weren’t many tourists in Oxford today, for example, even though the weather was perfect. Our next trip will be Friday and we’re going to Hampton Court Palace, where Henry VIII lived.

Our day wasn’t all immaculate lawns and Palladian architecture, though.

Here we are on the M40 heading back to London on the bus. There’s been an accident and they’ve closed the highway ahead…


Traffic jam on the M40 highway back to London

It was one of those traffic jams that was so long, people got out of their cars. The kids didn’t mind. They’re used to long bus rides, too.

Successful Homeschool Field Trip

Our kids may not have any friends, but they love each other, and they know how to entertain themselves, wherever they may be.

Here they are having fun together somewhere in West London, while we wait for a bus back to Chiswick…


Miles (11), Dusty (13), and Penny (8) wait for the bus back to Chiswick

All in all, it was another fantastic homeschool field trip…

– Tom Dyson


A reader wonders about Tom borrowing against his life insurance policy to buy his late mother’s home… while another has kind words for the Dyson family…

Reader comment: Love seeing the photos of all the tourist attractions in London – keep them coming! As far as Kate and you buying your mum’s place, my vote is to buy. When are you ever going to get the chance to buy such a great place at (pretty much) a 50% discount?

Although, I would question the means with which you want to purchase by borrowing from your life insurance policy. If it’s your money, yet you’ll have to pay it back with interest – more than likely – make sure you check the rates first!

The way we always looked at our home when raising our three children was 1) it gave them stability, 2) it was my husband’s and my house – as an investment – not only in and for our family, but also for our future, and 3) I always told our kids that although it was their dad’s and my house, it was their home, too… and they should take care of it as such.

It taught them pride, persistence, ownership, time management – just to name a few. Our children are now all grown, productive adults with their own children in their own homes.

Reader comment: If you do not think so many of us have followed your “trek” around the world and have not become jealous of you and the family… Then I seriously think you need to think again!

In my humble opinion, how you and Kate are educating the family – with both you and Kate included – is almost beyond words for me. I, personally, have been blessed where my job has taken me to many countries. If I had been able to bring my two kids and wife along, that would have been awesome in an unselfish way. The world’s cultures are an education in themselves. Stay safe.

Reader comment: I’ve been reading/following your Postcards for about a year and a half, maybe more. Reading about your family’s trips, experiences, and adventures have been wonderful.

Later in life, I expect your kids will realize what an unusual and amazing life they have had the past couple or so years. Being exposed to so many cultures is an asset in life. I’m a liberal in social context and middle of the road in money. Just wish I had the cash to put into some gold. Please continue your saga for as long as you can. Thanks for the adventure and the financial information.

And finally, others want to meet up with the Dysons in London after Tom extended an invitation

Reader comment: In last Friday’s email you stated, “if you live in London and would like to hang out with us sometime, please drop us a line. We love meeting up and making new friends!”

I’m here and always happy to meet. Happy to come to your area or wherever you prefer.

Reader comment: Thanks so much for your Postcards. I live in west London and would love to take you for a real curry sometime. It would be a “thank you” for all the great stories I’ve read over the last year. Let me know.

Tom’s note: We’re looking forward to meeting some of you! And, as always, please keep writing us at [email protected]. I’ll do my best to answer your questions in a future Friday mailbag edition.