Manchester/Bath UK Trip Journal Day 5
Train one was late, Gentle Reader, so I had to dash for train 2. Of course, I didn’t know where it was going, as Bath Spa was just one stop along a route, so I had to find someone knowledgeable enough to tell me just where in the hell I was going. Luckily, the train station had one such person, and I had to go down, through a tunnel, and back up on a different platform. A few minutes later, my train!
Bath Spa was the next stop, so then I had to figure out where to go, and how to find the South entrance, where my B&B Host was to pick me up. After asking for directions, again, I found where I was going, and the charming Wolfgang was there to pick me up. We chatted on the ride to the B&B and arrived a few minutes later. What a beautiful space! What a charming house! I have been so lucky in my travels, both at the Guesthouse in Sale, Manchester, and here at the B&B in Bath. Both are run by friendly and professional staff, both are spotless and gorgeous, and both feel welcoming. I’ll post links once I get back home, as I recommend either to anyone should they ask.
I charged up in my room with some tea and biscuits (see how quickly I’m adapting to British ways?) before I began my excursion through Bath to get dinner. I made the 10-12 minute walk into Bath (not bad at all, really, and I like that I’m not staying in the City Centre) and began to wander. And wander. And wander. To the point where I was looking for the Roman Baths and the Abbey as a point of reference. Apparently, I wandered past them both a couple of times while looking for both of them. Have I mentioned, Gentle Reader, my terrible sense of direction? I did stop and ask someone for directions, and she happily supplied me with them (when in doubt, Adorable American works, and I’m Adorable American in spades), and I found the Roman Baths. Still, didn’t know what I was going to do for dinner.
So I wandered some more. And wandered. And wandered. I told myself the next restaurant I saw, I was stopping at. Of course, I didn’t like the next restaurant I saw, or the one after that, so I wandered a bit more until I found a little Thai place. I sat down, ordered everything on the menu (just about), and began to read (White Hot Kiss by Jennifer Armentrout, currently). I received my appetizers (that’s right, two of them) of coconut chicken soup and spring rolls, and then my dinner of basil chicken and rice.
Once I finished eating, I tried to wander back, looking for the Abbey, because Wolfgang told me there were always taxis waiting by the Abbey. It was now dark and I didn’t anticipate wandering around further as I tried to find my way back across town. Not only that, but my feet hurt! Even more, I promised my dad not to do Anything Stupid, and wandering around in a foreign city after dark seems the epitome of Anything Stupid. Taxi it is.
My taxi driver was enormously kind and friendly, and easy peasy, we were back at the B&B. Only 5.60GBP, a price I happily paid for ease and comfort! And now I’m ensconced in my room, named after the fantastic writer Frances Burney (a great influence on Jane Austen you know), so I feel like this trip is just coming up Austen! On the mantle in this room are four Burney books, including my beloved Evelina.
Tomorrow, I have planned out my day so that I hit everything I need to hit, starting with the Royal Crescent and the No. 1 Royal Crescent, a Georgian museum dedicated to life during the Georgian era. Then, on to the Fashion Museum and the Assembly Rooms for their Georgian clothing exhibition. Also, Assembly Rooms (Austen Austen Austen). Then, more Austen with the Jane Austen Centre before I’m going to hit the Royal Masonic, just for a few minutes, to take some pictures for my dad. After that, it’s on to the Pump Room for afternoon tea (also, Pump Room re: Austen Austen Austen), and that should take me through most of the day. At some point, I need to find the house where Austen lived while in Bath, although it’s not open to visitors, I can still take a picture of the outside.
On Thursday, I go to Chawton to see Jane Austen’s house, and I think I’ve finally got it all sorted as to what train when and what bus when, and how to get back, etc. etc. This is the part I’m most nervous about, trying to get all of this timed just right for trains and buses. Fingers crossed!
Now, I’m going to relax in my room, try not to eat this other half of the Double Decker Bar (love Cadbury’s. LOVE IT), and try not to fall asleep where I sit.