Sunday, September 21, 2014

Southern England Adventures

I realize I am almost the worst person at blogging. I say almost purely because I am assuming there has to be someone out there worse than me,  I just don't know who they are. So much happens a day that I get a little overwhelmed and tell myself I will do this later... and then it just gets worse.

Here I am with about four posts to catch up on.
One day I will learn I suppose. Until then, just be patient because I promise to get them all out eventually.

Last week we took a trip to the southwest coast of England for three nights! It was wonderful. I mean, the riding several hours a day on a coach with limited leg room wasn't wonderful. Neither were the hostels or food. And to be perfectly honest, being without wifi is almost hard as pathetic as it is to admit that. But none of that even mattered. It is impossible to find anything to complain about here because I find myself completely content with life. Even Friday night I stayed in doing homework and wasn't even upset. Why? I spent the afternoon wandering the streets of London and going to sweet museums for free. FREE. A "bad" day in London doesn't exist.

Back to our trip last week.

Our trip started at Stonehenge. Way, way cool folks. Highly recommended. Sure, at the end of the day it is just a bunch of rocks. But it represents so much more than that. It has mystery and genius of the past that is absolutely fascinating. 

Next we went to Salisbury Cathedral..

I thought it was stunning. I tend to think every cathedral is stunning though. It is very gothic in design and beautifully built. I love old buildings..  It is also home to one of only four Magna Carta's in the world. That was neat to see, but sadly no photography was permitted so you will just have to take my word for it. 

Next we went to Stourhead Gardens. I will admit, when I saw it on the schedule I just thought, "okay cool. I like flowers. It will be nice to get off the coach and walk around for a bit, even if it's just a garden. No complaints here." .. Little did I know all my wildest dreams that I did not even realize I had were about to come true.
It turns out they filmed parts of Pride and Prejudice (the one with Kierra Knightly) there. 
That is my all time favorite book and I could watch the movie over and over again and never get sick of it. Seriously, so much love for Pride and Prejudice. 
Now. You know the scene where Elizabeth runs away from church in the rain and Darcy chases after her, confesses his love, and asks her to end his agony and marry him? And she just tells him to get off and it is pouring rain and absolutely perfect? Yes. Yes, I was standing on the pavilion where that scene took place. Yes. Yes, I died and went to heaven and ran up a mountain to get to it and it was wonderful. Everyone should put Stourhead Gardens on their list of places to visit in life because not only was it picturesque and perfectly lovely to walk around, but.. Pride and Prejudice guys. Need I say more? 

Now the real question is where is Mr. Darcy??
Candid moment through the gardens

That night we stopped at a pier for dinner and to just enjoy walking on the beach.
We definitely enjoyed it. 
three cheers to England 

The next day we ventured to St. Michael's Mount in Cornwall, the very southwest corner of England. It is so cool. It was a castle on essentially its own island with a little community that lives in the tiny town around it. Everyone on the island works for the family that lives in the castle (and has lived there for hundreds of years). During low-tide you can walk the probably half mile out to it, which is what we did. I don't know how to fully describe how cool I thought it was or how brilliant I found it. 

At this point in the post you might be noticing the excessive number of "jumping pictures."
Well.. Yes. You are correct in thinking there are too many and we need to become slightly more creative. But to be honest, the four of us take one at every location. I have only posted a small number of the ones we have for your enjoyment. Ha, there will be so many by the time December rolls around. We will be professional jumpers. I could not really tell you why we do it, but we do. Just roll with it. 

Loving the Castle life
 Following St. Michael's we stopped at Tintagel, old castle ruins and Merlin's cave where King Arthur was apparently conceived? fun fact for you I suppose. It was breathtaking. Possibly my favorite stop. At least of that day. The view was just killer. So were the steps... Haha. So many steps. No complaints though; after hours on a coach it fells good to stretch your legs.

Is this not incredible? You can't tell me it is not stunning.

The next morning we hiked up yet another mountain of sorts to reach a Tor. I don't really know much about it.. Other than we did a 2 hour hike in a half hour and deserve some sort of reward. 
Then again, the view was definitely reward enough. Southern England is beautiful. It holds a special spot in my heart and I would not be opposed to moving there one day, even if just for a little while. 

That afternoon we arrived at our last destination: Bath, England. Home to some Jane Austen novels and the Roman Baths. Also lots of flowers, so naturally I took a picture. I am obsessed with all the flowers in this country. We need more in the states. 

The Roman Baths were so intriguing! I had never realized the amount of area they covered until the tour. It is fascinating to say the least. Highly recommend the audio tour. Romans highly interest me and I love England so mix the two together and I am one happy camper. Especially when a little Jane Austen can be thrown into the mix as well. This trip really was perfect. I have such a good life. All these adventures happened in the span of three days. THREE. And I only showed you a very small part! It does not take a genius to see that this study abroad gig is the bomb and roughly a billion times better than a regular semester. I am the luckiest person I know. 

(Anyways. It was a little after 3 am for me now and we leave on yet another trip in about 5 hours so it would probably be smart for me to get to sleep now. Please forgive any grammar or spelling errors as I am too tired to proofread...)

Love Always, Aimee