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London Day 5: In which we get on the bus

Today being our last day here, I planned for us to take a bus tour to Oxford, Stratford, and Warwick Castle. I knew I’d be tired, I knew T. would like the places, and I knew there was no way in hell I was going to feel like sorting out trains and the like. I wanted a babysitter so I could relax. It worked, sort of. I have gotten used to taking my own time while traveling. I would have lingered in some places and hurried through others. However, I did have an interesting moment in Oxford while waiting to be reunited with my 51 new friends, my babysitter, Norma, and my driver, Andreas, after our allotted 20 minutes for shopping. Our meeting spot was across the street from some shops next to a bike rack. I happened to be glancing around and saw a nice door. I like to take photos of doors. This one required two pictures, one of the whole and one of the brass plaque:



Other Dorothy Sayers fans may recognize that Peter Wimsey stays with the Master of Balliol at one point in Gaudy Night. Not long after I took the photo, the actual Master returned home and I got to meet him. I did not ask him if Lord Peter happened to be staying with him, but I was sorely tempted. Oxford is my kind of town, full of students and their graffiti, books, bikes, flyers, and gorgeous buildings. My fun fact for the day is that Minis are also made there.

When Syd and I went to Stratford, it was the highlight of our trip. He lit up at the whole concept of being there. This time I was sadly disappointed. We were essentially herded through the house at a combination of flank speed and total stop due to congestion. It was raining, but the garden is still lovely:



At that point, I began to worry about how Warwick would be. Fortunately, the extra cheesy parts cost extra, so mostly we focused on the exhibits of the Kingmaker and the scandalous society weekends. T. and I climbed up to the oldest part of the castle, dating from just after the Norman Conquest when William decided to replace the wooden structure there with stone. Here is an arrow slit:



T. and I also endured the 530 stairs necessary to do the walk along the walls and through the towers. The views are lovely, but the stairs are steep, narrow, and dark in between the vistas. T. says that it is a nice place, but he’d still rather live in the Tower of London.

Tomorrow is all about modes of transportation. We’ll taxi to Paddington to catch a train to Heathrow to catch a plane to San Francisco to meet Brent with a car. It has been a wonderful trip.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
happy_potterer
Jul. 13th, 2011 07:34 am (UTC)
Balliol is also Wimsey's own college. I guess it's too late to ask you to kiss the wood for me.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

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