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Whither Shall I Wander?

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Rose (Jean Marsh) walks through the now empty morning room after the Bellamys have left 165 Eaton Place.

WHITHER SHALL I WANDER? is the final episode of the 1970's UK Period drama, Upstairs, Downstairs. The episode was written by John Hawkesworth and was directed by Bill Bain. The episode finishes up the series (up until the later 2010 series) and shows the farewells of both the families upstairs and downstairs.

The title comes from the second line of the old children's nursery rhyme, "Goosy, Goosy, Gander". The third line is where the series title, Upstairs Downstairs, comes from.

Plot

After the suicidal death of James Bellamy, his will leaves everything to Georgina, who mainly inherits all his debts, due to his generosity towards his friends. Sir Geoffrey Dillon (Raymond Huntley), the family's long-time solicitor, announces that due to the outstanding debts that James had, the house had to be sold and everything in it auctioned off, except for the family's own personal possessions. This also meant the servants would all be losing their jobs.

As it turns out, plans have been made for everyone. Angus Hudson and Kate Bridges were to begin their lives at a guest house called Sea View, which was run by one of Mr. Hudson's sisters. Edward and Daisy are still waiting to hear what they will do, as they put out all sorts of ads for situations wanted, but nothing has come of it.

Georgina is thrilled to see her fiancé, Robert, the Marquis of Stockbridge (Anthony Andrews) who had returned from his year abroad. He is still in love with Georgina and wants to marry her, but with her not having any money and not wanting to be a charity case, insists the wedding be postponed.

However, to prevent that, Georgina's step-aunt, Virginia Hamilton Bellamy, writes a cheque of two thousand pounds to be left over after all the debts had been taken care of, to the shock of Dillon, but agrees to go through with it. A happy Georgina uses that money to pay for her wedding.

Mrs. Bridges begins work on the wedding cake after being asked to do so by Virginia. When it is completed, Richard and Virginia come downstairs to see the great cake. Then, things begin to be taken care of as the house is prepared to be sold. Georgina and Lord Robert ask Edward and Daisy to join them as their butler and head house parlor maid. A situation they accept.

Robert and Georgina are happily wed (although the wedding itself is not shown, the reception is). During the reception, Richard and long-time family friend, Lady Prudence Fairfax, gossip about some of the women who made spectacles of themselves during the wedding which causes an amused Virginia to shush them both, before the picture is taken.

The biggest surprise, though, comes when Hudson and Mrs. Bridges are married and they are preparing for their new lives at Sea View. They both agree that Ruby is needing of a family, and so they take her along with them. Rose is brought along with the Bellamys when they get ready to move to Dorset, where Richard, now retired from the House of Lords, plans to spend the rest of his life writing.

After noticing that Hudson and Bridges were now married, Richard was about to say, but Virginia finishes that "It would have made Marjorie laugh," revealing that although they were married, she knew that he still missed Lady Marjorie, and knowing that she may never replace her. Richard kisses Virginia, and then they prepare to leave Eaton Place for the last time.

After the upstairs family leaves, the movers come in and take all the furniture out, as per the results of the auction. Downstairs, the new Mrs. Hudson takes the old familiar clock that had been in the Servants hall, because she did not want the movers to get their hands on it, as she tells an amused Rose. Then, Hudson, his new wife and Ruby leave Eaton Place.

The series ends as Rose, now the only one left, wanders through the empty and lifeless house and hears various words from the various seasons and episodes of the series. Some were sentimental (as she drills Sarah on her duties; and preparing for the King himself to visit the Bellamy family) while some were amusing (as when she grins and laughs at the time that she took Mr. Hudson to task about his disdain for Hazel Forrest Bellamy being the lady of the house). Then after hearing James Bellamy talk about her being proud for her late fiancé's sacrifice, she leaves 165 Eaton Place for the final time, out the front door, and heads off to her new life, as the house is closed up for the last time. Rose gets ready to go to Dorset.

In the 2010 incarnation of Upstairs, Downstairs, it was revealed that after Rose had finally left the Bellamy household, she was given a teapot for her many years of faithful service to Richard and Virginia. She then opened a domestic staff agency in Belgravia before she was recruited by Lady Agnes Holland to return to 165 Eaton Place, this time as the Head Housekeeper.

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