Traveling is a wonderful way to leave your worries and stress behind. I find it energizing and relaxing at the same time.
In 2006 my daughter and I headed for London, where one of my sisters lives. This was our second trip together, and my sixth, so we didn't do much that was traditional.
One of the most exciting, take that any way you like, moments was finding ourselves on a bus that took us too far out of London before we realized we'd missed our stop. The good news is that the bus driver told us how to get a free ride back, since we seemed like dopey US tourists!
While on the bus, we passed this cute back yard garden with its own castle and gnomes... about an hour out of the city.
After that detour, we went to the beautiful National Gallery.
And at the end of the day, we did what most Londoners would do... and stopped by a Pub not far from my sister's flat for a pint and fish n chips.
Notice the Desserts on the blackboard...
- Apple Pie
- Spotted Dick
- Choc Fudge Cake
- Sticky Toffee Pudding
- Ice Cream
Which would you have ordered?
We spent 3 days in Brighton, a first for both of us. I had to visit the city that one my favorite British authors, Georgette Heyer , featured in so many of her wonderful novels.
The weather was not very cooperative. We had rain one day, and every afternoon the winds blustered and turned icy cold. Brighton seemed very eclectic with a huge mix of people.
Of course the Royal Pavillion was a must see. We took a day tour and went by later that night, when we captured its exquisite architecture against the dark sky. It was built for the Prince Regent, later King George IV, in stages between 1787 and 1823.
"It takes its unique character from the man for whom it was built, George IV, and its magnificent interior is a reflection of his personality and Regency reign. It was conceived as a monument to style, finesse, technological excellence and above all pleasure. It remains unequaled in its colossal ambition and glorious sense of joie de vivre.
George was determined that the palace should be the ultimate in comfort and convenience.
Particular attention was paid by his architect and designers to lighting, heating and sanitation, as well as to the provision of the most modern equipment of the day for the Great Kitchen."
After resting for a day in London, we took a bus to Oxford...our mission, visit Christ Church where many scenes were shot in the Harry Potter films.
We got a quick bite to eat, and walked to the Church just as the doors were being closed for the day! We couldn't believe our luck. So we took a walk through the magnificent University, did a little shopping and headed back to London.
A bus tour took us to Leeds and Dover. We both fell in love with Leeds Castle. It was built in 1119 by Robert de Crevecoeur as a Norman stronghold.
The last private owner of the castle was the Hon. Olive, Lady Baillie, a daughter of Almeric Paget, 1st Baron Queenborough, and his first wife, Pauline Payne Whitney, an American heiress. Lady Baillie bought the castle in 1926. She redecorated the interior. During the early part of
Leeds was used as a hospital where Lady Baillie and her daughters hosted burned Commonwealth airmen as part of their recovery. The castle was opened to the public in 1976.
Dover was quaint, a typical fishing / Port town in many ways...except for the Castle!
I hope to make a similar trip with my son next summer. Thank you for reminiscing with me!