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Published: September 17th 2017
Geo: 52.0497, -1.78013
I woke up about 5am (midnight for you) after a decent few hours of sleep. I thought we had overslept because the sunshine was so bright. Nope, just that far North that the sun rises long before 5am! So I forced myself to go back to sleep until 6:30. Breakfast, ordered the night before, was ready for us at 7:30. We wanted to fit a few things in before we caught our bus to Chipping Campden at noon.
Our first stop was the Holy Trinity Church, the burial site for Shakespeare. Stratford is a beautiful town. Everyone seems to have flowers or flower gardens (even if they have only drilled a hole in the sidewalk and have them growing out of the sidewalk) and neat little houses. The walk took us by parks, a memorial to veterans of each war since WWI. They make these poppy wreaths, like the ones our VFWs sell Memorial day weekend. Really quite moving. Anyway, the church is 800 years old and everything in it is exquisite, including "the American window", a gift from our country to Shakespeares hometown. The church sits on the banks of the Avon river and we walked along the
path as the church bells pealed in the distance.
Oh, I nearly forgot....as we walked up to the church, we realized there wasn't a memory card in Mom's camera! Seriously?!?! Once again, it's a damn good thing that I have my IPod! So it's my computer AND my camera!
More walking through town before we grabbed our suitcases and headed to the bus stop so we could get to Chipping Campden, the official starting point of the Cotswold Way! A slight bus snafu that created a small amount of stress was soon forgotten as we realized it worked out in the end....brought us to Chipping Campden. (with an English accent) "a lovely little town set in the middle of rolling hills full of sheep where all the buildings are built with the local yellow limestone, Cotswold limestone" The bus dropped us about a block from our hotel and what a beautiful building.....quaint....quintessentially, Cotswoldian! I really need to get a thesaurus!
The Old Bakehouse has parts 900 years old and run by a fifth generation family. The room has two twin beds, a cute little bathroom and a window seat! I'd move in if they'd have me!
We spent the day walking
about the town....I've become a bit obsessed with knockers. Uh, well, door knockers. The doorways are amazing. Each door has it's own personality. Most are thin, some are hobbit sized and lots of them have great knockers! Lions, dragons, loops, faces, abstract shapes....we've seen a ton. You'll see them too, just as soon as I can figure out how to upload them from my IPod!
This afternoon we had (imagine Mary Poppins voice) a lovely tea at a tea room. We decided to make it an early dinner and I had cottage pie (oh, so tasty) and Mom had a BLT bap. (basically a type of roll the sandwich is made with). I only know this because we also bought whole wheat baps for the trail tomorrow and that's what they were called on the package! Then, at my insistence, we had a plain scone with clotted cream and strawberry jam. Guess who even cleaned the crumbs off her plate with a spoon? Yep, not me! And guess who asked if clotted cream had lots of calories? I lied....no calories on vacation.
We are finishing our day at the Noel Arms hotel pub. Ok, ok, so we are actually in
the sitting area, me with a local ale and Mom's reading magazines. But hey, baby steps, right?! Anyway the ale is a deep gold, tinge of amber called Wye Valley. (read in your best Eliza Doolittle Cockney accent) "Quite a tasty brew" and it only cost £1.65 for a half pint. Yes, I know....I don't need disapproving looks from her yet though. Pints will be ordered after a long day on the trail when she's a wee bit tired! She DID try my ale and even said it was smooth! I'm making progress!
Weather better today....only sprinkled a bit and much warmer. Probably about 68 or 70. Really looking forward to getting out on the trail. Until tomorrow....cheers from the pub!
Tot: 3.139s; Tpl: 0.021s; cc: 13; qc: 50; dbt: 0.0252s; 3; m:saturn w:www (188.8.131.52); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.4mb