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December 20th 2008
Published: January 3rd 2009
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We'd wanted to go to Bath for a while and with my ex-Auckland flatmate Joel (Clements) over from Bermuda for Xmas, it was a good opportunity to show him some of the UK. He lived with Cat and I at the Bondery for a couple of years, so she and Graham were also keen to explore the Bath Christmas Markets with us... It turned out these were in November, so luckily there was lots of other stuff to see and do! Hmmm...nice one Astle.

Clements was in town only one night before we shot away for the weekend - as were our friends Gus and Lorraine who were off to Salzburg for Christmas - so we decided to meet for Dim Sum in China Town. Luckily I was recovering from the flu so started the night off slowly, whereas the boys took the opportunity to catch up with open arms. I left them to party on at Waxy's just after midnight...

When I woke at 7 the next morning I sent English to wake Clements up, but after emerging from the shower I found him in the foetal position clutching a golf driver and spooning Clements on the couch... Needless to say I managed to haul Clements down to Paddington Station with me to meet Cat and Graham, and then English met us in Bath some time later... Think they'd only just finished eating their post-drinking hotdogs about an hour before I woke them up.

The train journey was only an hour and a half and I managed to score us a sweet hotel deal, so the whole trip worked out really cheap. It was much colder than London, so when we arrived we headed to the warmth of Bath Museum to check out the ancient Roman Baths.

Having worked up quite an appetite, and not feeling satisfied after our first faggots, we headed to Sally Lunn's for a bite to eat. We saw a lot of people about town in rugby jerseys, and found out that Bath were playing Sale, so after lunch headed to the rugby ground to see if any tickets were left. Unfortunately most of Bath had the same idea, so the game was sold out, but by a stroke of luck one of the stewards saw us and offered us two free tickets! The boys jumped at the chance, and after watching over the fence for half an hour and seeing our boy Luke McAlister score a try, Cat and I decided to hit the shops! In the meantime English turned up, so we sent him off to explore the museum before we all met up and checked into our hotel.

My bosses sister lives in Bath, and she'd given us some restaurant and clubbing advice. Our first tip was Jamie Oliver's restaurant, but not wanting to queue outside for two hours, we decided to head to Martini's for Italian. We also had a wait there, but at least it was at the bar A few pizzas, Peronis, Chiantis and Limoncellos later, we hit the clubs. Turned out to be a really great night, and Cat and I worked our magic to get VIP access everywhere 😊 We even ended up drinking with the Bath rugby players, who for some reason were dressed as gladiators?

The next thing we knew we were being phoned by reception to say that check out was five minutes ago, so we hauled ass into town for some much needed coffee. Unfortunately the guide for the free walking tour never showed, so we used the Lonely Planet to navigate around the sites for the afternoon. The boys pooh-poohed the Jane Austen Museum, so after some photos of them on Gay Street - much to the amusement of the locals - we visited The Circus, Royal Crescent and Victoria Park.

For the rest of the arvo we soaked away our hangovers in Bath Thermae. With only two hot pools, the place had nothing on Hanmer Springs, but the aromatic steam rooms definitely sucked away any toxins. The pools must have done us the world of good, as after our pub dinner we all felt like we'd been away from London for days. I look forward to my old Hammersmith flatmate Tickles moving to Bath in February, so we can go back again soon!

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