Due to difficulties with my camera I didn’t post this on the day it happened. Events took place: Saturday March 21
Today went much better than I expected it to be. Last night I finished my blog post and attempted to go to bed; it was 3 am. But it was so cold in our room that there was no chance of falling asleep. I read a book on my I pad and talked with Kyle through Facebook. Eventually I gave up on staying in the room and went out onto the landing and watched two and a half episodes of Sanctuary. It was 6 am when I dared to face the room. It was still cold as all get out in there. After grabbing a blanket from the closet things got a little better.
Having gotten 2.5 hours of sleep, I was expecting to be a bear towards everyone. I wasn’t and I’m proud that I was still civil despite being sleep deprived. Tonight should be better. When we got back from our adventure today the room was pleasantly warm. Only time will tell.
But on with today. After nearly sleeping through three alarms, I managed to get out of bed. Breakfast today was the same as yesterday with an egg and bacon. Today they also had a piece of toast. I didn’t eat the egg, but had a little bowl of apple sauce and two glasses of orange juice. I think being out in the rain and up late has given me a little cold. Been stuffed up for the better part of the day.
Once breakfast was done, we came back up to the room and packed our day packs for the trip to Bath. Yesterday I gave a little information about the City of Bath. I’m not going to go over it again because I have so many new things to tell you. If you want to catch the past information read yesterday’s post Day Three and I think I found Heaven.
All the Euro Spring students got on a coach bus driven by a nice guy called Dave. I had intended to sleep on the bus, but that didn’t happen the way I had planned. Dr. Chapman was a very good tour director in the fact that he pointed out everything that had something important in its history. First we stopped in Burford in the Cotwolds. There was an old church there where we spent a good chunk of time.
This church was a sight to behold with a little bit of dark history. Dr. Chapman showed us an outer wall that had musket holes from where it had been used as a place for execution. There had been a group during the English Civil War that had wanted extended suffrage, popular sovereignty and equality before the law. This group was called the Levellers. I couldn’t hear all of Dr. Chapman’s story but needless to say, the Levellers weren’t very popular in the end and they were executed outside the church.
Inside the church was beautiful and a little, something that isn’t easily put into words. If anyone has ever stepped into a tomb or catacomb it’s a feeling like that. A feeling that you should tread lightly and show respect for those resting there. I had felt something similar when I had walked through a catacomb in Lima Peru. Thankfully this didn’t feel like I was intruding so much this time around. There was so much to see that there is no way to put it all into words. A choral group was practicing for service tomorrow. Their voices and the sound of the piano added to the feel of the place. It reminded a little of the church I went to as a child, except these guys were some kind of Protestant and they were here in England and not back in the states.
When we were done with the church, we had a little time left in Burford to explore the town. Aimee and I didn’t get very far, but we did manage to take a picture of a store in the town that has the same name and spelling as her mother. I had been hoping to find a yarn shop where I could get my hands on a drop spindle. Burford used to be a major commercial place for woolen goods. Surly there should have been some echo of that still in the town. Don’t the English craft?
From Burford we rode through a couple other small towns, including a little place where if you blink you’d miss it. Pennsylvania: population 100. one car repair shop, a church, and a bed and breakfast. Like I said, blink and you’d miss it. We passed it so fast I didn’t get a chance to catch a picture. If Dr. Chapman hadn’t pointed it out, we wouldn’t have noticed it.
Going down into Bath my ears wanted to pop. You go from the top of these rolling hills to the bottom of this valley and the view is green and breath taking. Dr. Chapman took us on a walking tour. Again, I didn’t hear much of what he said about certain places. We got hailed on as we were walking by the Royal Crescent. The city was slightly confusing to navigate but thankfully there are street maps posted on nearly every corner of the city. Aimee and I would have been all turned around if it hadn’t been for those.
The main reason for us going to this city was to see the Roman Baths. Dr. Chapman guided us to the bath, got us our passes inside and then turned us loose. Inside the gate to the bath we had the option to take a personal audio phone tour to guide us through the baths. Unfortunately my camera died as I was nearing the end of my tour. I charged it Dad before we left this morning. Oh well. If you get the chance to go see this place for yourself you’ll realize that you might need a full day to take in everything.
Once I got through the tour, and my camera was dead, Aimee and I went to explore the town. I feel a little selfish because we got to go to a place that I wanted to see but we didn’t get to see one she wanted to see. We stopped in at the Jane Austen Center located at 40 Gay street, Queen Square, Bath. Even though Jane didn’t write anything while she was living in Bath, I have a friend back home who is a super fan of Jane Austen. Who would have disliked me deeply if I hadn’t popped in to look around. It cost 6 pounds to tour her house so I toured the gift shop in the front room instead. On the way out Aimee took a picture of me next to the statue of Jane Austen.
Aimee had wanted to see the house where Sir Willian Herschel had discovered the planet Uranus on March 1st 1781. Dr. Chapman had also pointed out this house as a way to look inside of 19 New King Street. The closest we got to it was during the walking tour. Sorry Aimee for being a time hog.
Feeling pressed for time and not wanting to be left behind in Bath we decided to head back towards the bus. Where there was a little cafe where she got a hot chocolate while I got a coffee. This was the same spot where, once we had all gotten off the bus, we discover just how weird English bathrooms can be. This time around we sipped our drink warming our hands and watched a male and female duck tuck themselves in for the night.
Dinner tonight had been a hot-dish of sorts with lamb meat, potatoes and a sauce all mixed together, carrots and broccoli and a homemade Nature valley bar for dessert. I didn’t take the broccoli, but ate what I could of everything else. During dinner there was more talk about our plans to go to London tomorrow. Six other people will be going with Aimee and I on the 8 am bus to London. We still hadn’t gotten tickets for the bus, so Aimee and I ventured out into the dark with very sore feet to buy our tickets. We hadn’t been to the bus station since the first day we got here. We knew most of the streets but not where the bus station was on the street. An hour and 2o minutes was spent trying to find the bus station only to learn that they were closed and unless we wanted to buy our tickers direct from the driver, we were out of luck until morning.
Felling lightly frustrated and happy that we had found the place and now knew the way, we headed back to Wycliffe. We stopped again at the Tesco on the way there. Seeing how there will no food served tomorrow we picked up a pastry for us to share and more sparking water. I just got one bottle but Aimee got three. Standing in line to check out a worker asked if we wanted to do the self check-out option. We tried it. I used cash and didn’t have too much trouble. They are a lot like the ones back home.
Both of us are back in our room and it is still pleasantly warm. I get the feeling that I’ll be asleep before my head hits the pillow. I know this post is incredibly vague, but I can’t stay awake any longer. Can’t wait for London. Can’t wait for bed. Good night all.
In case you missed the Links
English Civil War: http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/civil_war_revolution/
Walking Tour: http://visitbath.co.uk/things-to-do/tours-and-sightseeing/guided-walking-tours
Street Maps: http://visitbath.co.uk/travel-and-maps/bath-city-centre-map
Jane Austen Center: http://www.janeausten.co.uk/
Sir. William Herschel: http://www.astroleague.org/al/obsclubs/herschel/fwhershs.html
Bus Station: http://www.oxfordbus.co.uk/