Exploring & Escapades

bits & pieces of my travels

Month: March, 2017

Tower

I’ve been inside the Tower of London before, and while it’s one of my favorite activities in London, it’s also not free; I didn’t want to pay to do the same tour again, and so, while my visiting friends went inside, I opted instead to explore the outskirts with my camera on this misty, moody English afternoon. 

The area is one of the most crowded in London (from my experience, at least), and there were tourists everywhere. Some might find that annoying, but I thought it was sort of nice. In this one little area of the world, so much of that world packed in together. All of these people here for the same view, to walk the same street, hundreds of years old. 

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Punting

Anytime we have visitors in Cambridge, of course we take them punting down the River Cam, typically with Scudamores. Sometimes, they arrive excited and eager to punt; other times, they look at us confused and ask, “What’s a punt?” But as I said, of course we go. Punting is so quintessentially Cambridge that it seems almost sacrilegious not to at least take the guided tour.

This particular trip was my fourth, which might seem to be three too many; it’s not. Every trip, no matter how many times I go, is different. First time, I learned so much and our guide was wonderful. Next two times were ok; our guides were more energetic, but not as informative. This time, though, was the *best.* I didn’t think after three times doing the same tour, I could learn anything new, but I did. That pub in the last photo? It’s where Pink Floyd performed their first ever show (yes!).

I know this won’t be my last time punting in Cambridge, and I love that. I can’t wait to see what I discover on the next trip, and the next… More stories behind the buildings, the pubs, the gardens, and the people that made them, and yet another person’s take on them all.

Cambs from Above

Finally made it up to the top of Great St. Mary’s for this stellar bird’s-eye view of the city. I walk by the entrance to the tower so often, but I always assumed it was nothing more than a tourist trap until people started telling me, “No, you *have* to go.” Yes, you do have to go. It’s incredible and absolutely worth the £4 fee and the gazillion steps to the top. 

When we visited, there was a violin concert at the altar, just beautiful. I may return simply for that. But regardless, I will be back here next time I have a visitor from out-of-town.

Grantchester

Winter wanderings through Grantchester. Abnormally warm for February, a bit over sixty degrees Fahrenheit. We walked from town out to The Orchard, about 1.5 miles through the meadows along the river and through the mud. It was the first time we were able to find a seat for tea in the garden; in the springtime, it’s too crowded. Not on a Monday afternoon in February.

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