To Bath and Back…

29 Jul

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Today was a bit slower paced, and it was a welcome change.  After breakfast, (I finally took pictures of the breakfast we’ve been enjoying every morning) we headed over to the train station to catch the outbound train to Bath.  We wanted to see the 2000 year old Roman Baths (another world heritage site).  It was a very cool and over cast today, but still no real rain.  I’d say the high was in the mid 60’s.  I kept my jacket on all day and it felt good!

The train trip took about an hour or so, and the scenery once again was beautiful.  The countryside really is delightful and we’ve enjoyed seeing it on our train journeys.  We exited the train station in Bath and walked through the streets, looking into some of the shops.  We toured the baths and decided to eat lunch in the historic pump room that has been a gathering place for Bath’s citizens for many years.  I think Jane Austen attended parties held in the Pump Room when she lived in Bath.  (Sarah will correct me if I’m wrong)  Since it was such a cool day, we both decided on the soup and sandwich.  It was cream of broccoli soup with a roast beef and  English mustard sandwich served with “skinny fries”.  I decided to go entirely English and have hot tea with mine.  It really hit the spot on this cold day.

After lunch, we toured the town some more, did some shopping then later in the afternoon, right before boarding the train for the return trip, we got a cup of coffee at a little street side cafe.  Once we got back to London, we took the tube over to the Hyde Park area.  We had walked through St. James Park earlier in the week, but really wanted to see the huge Hyde Park.  One of the water events for the 2012 Olympics will occur on the Serpentine Lake.  We walked through the gardens of Kensington Palace (the Palace itself is  being remodeled, but the gardens are open).  They had a delightful “love secrets” display in the gardens.  The arbor was hung with clear red acrylic balls of all different sizes (similar to Christmas ornaments) and inside each ball was written a love secret.  We enjoyed reading them.

We walked for a very long time in Hyde Park, it is massive and we still didn’t see it all but we did get to see a good deal of it.  We headed back to the tube station and waited for the next train for awhile, but they were having major delays and ending up taking the train we were waiting on out of service, so we had to exit the train and begin the walk to the next tube station to get back to our hotel.  There were so many people trying to find alternate tube rides, that we could barely walk.  We decided to just find a place to eat near where we were, and wait until the crowd cleared out some before venturing on to the next tube station.  We walked up and down a couple of streets before coming to a restaurant called “Rhodes”.  We took a look at the menu they had posted outside the building, and it looked tempting so we decided to eat there.  We were in for an unexpected surprise!  They seated us and brought out a little cup of ice that had two perfect radish halves, 2 celery sticks, and two pieces of what I thought was cabbage but turned out to be fennel.  It was served with a little dip of some kind.  We didn’t know if we were supposed to eat it or if it was just a table decoration at first.  It was very unique looking and we hadn’t ordered it!  I finally decided to take a bite, figuring if I’d done the wrong thing, no one there knew me anyway!  It was very tasty.

We then made our dinner order.  I chose pasta with courgettes (didn’t know what that was, but thought I’d give it a try.  It’s zucchini!) and shrimp.  Jimmy ordered the rib eye.  We both chose a different salad.  It was all delicious!  When she served our salads, I realized we had eaten the veggies and dip and I hadn’t taken a picture!  Our waitress was so sweet (I think she was Swedish), Jimmy explained to her that we are taking pictures of our food while on our trip, and that I forgot to take a picture of the first course before we ate it.  She said, “when someone else comes in and is seated, I will bring you their vegetables and you snap a quick picture then I will take it away”. (This was said with a thick Swedish accent)  She giggled and said, “I think that is so nice that you take pictures of your food”.  In a few minutes, here she came with another saucer of crudites (I think that is the official term) and said, you need to take the picture, quick!  I snapped a quick photo and she whisked it away.  I wondered if she might have gotten in trouble if anyone noticed her doing that!

We decided to go all out and order dessert (for the second time today!)  I had the chocolate truffle cake with fresh mint ice cream and Jimmy had the vanilla parfait with strawberry shortcake.  We both had coffee and ended the evening on a very sweet note.  By the time we were done, the tube lines had cleared and we made it back to our hotel, discussing what we need to see tomorrow.

Love you all!

Mom/Deb

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3 Responses to “To Bath and Back…”

  1. Sarah July 29, 2011 at 9:24 pm #

    You know, Kensington Palace will be Will and Kate’s London residence! :) Sounds like another great day! All of the food looks amazing!!! :)

  2. Jim Grayson July 30, 2011 at 9:37 am #

    I haven’t been up to seeing all of your posts yet but hope to do so today. I did open this one and quickly found my choice of food would have run pretty much along the side of Jimmy’s. Guys love protein. Ladies, well, they are just more sophisticated than we are. :o)
    I’m grateful to the Lord you guys were able to make this wonderful trip. The baths are amazing. A lot of folks weren’t aware the Roman empire reached out to included Great Britain, or at least most of it. I didn’t know myself until several years ago. Thank goodness for the History Channel. :o)
    May the Lord bless you both and grant you travel mercies.
    My love to you both,
    Jim Grayson
    P.S.-
    I’m hoping when you get back that maybe we can talk on the phone, Jimmy and I. I miss talking to my brother occasionally, and of course, my sister Deb as well. :o)

    • Deb July 30, 2011 at 5:05 pm #

      You bet! We’d love to get together with you too, even if it’s just over the phone! Love you guys!

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