Who could resist this angel climbing a ladder up the side of Bath Abbey?
Climbing To Heaven
Watercolor, 8 x 10
My sister Barbara joined me on a 3 week trip to Europe. A large part of the trip was a cruise paid for by my teaching watercolors to the guests, but it started with short jaunt to England.
We had a frustrating start to the trip as our plane taking off from Eugene was delayed by nearly 6 hours. Sitting in the Eugene Airport at6 AM with an unknown departure put us on edge. Would we make our flight to London? Nope. Would we be able to make it to Bath, England for a prepaid hotel? Only if we could get to San Francisco by 7:00 pm. Tired and worn down, we did make it to S.F. to catch the last flight to London and were greatly relieved to be airborne for the U.K., with a great hope for catching some zzz's.
"My suitcase is where?"
Thinking we were over our travel frustrations, Barbara was in shock to find out her suitcase was still in San Francisco as we were preparing to leave Heathrow for Bath. We were told it would be delivered to Brocks Guesthouse in Bath the next day."Can I borrow undies and a nightgown?"
We had a great treat waiting for us as we stepped out of the airport. My sweet husband had gone online and ordered us a car to drive us to Bath, about a 2 hour drive. Since it was probably the one and only time this will ever happen, I took a pic of our driver holding up a sign with my name. We happily got into the vehicle and promptly slept through most of the drive.
Luckily, we arrived in Bath by late afternoon and were able to sight-see for a few hours. This is where I fell in love with the climbing angel in the blog opener. This Abbey Church was built in 1499 by the Bishop of Bath who, as the story goes, had a dream of angles ascending and descending into heaven, hence the decorative sculptures.
Bath is a beautiful town with more to see than the Roman Baths. Here is a shot of Pulteney Bridge crossing the Avon River.
The Roman Baths were built 2000 years ago and were a feat of great engineering. Many decorative features have been recovered and are displayed throughout the Museum.
After a wonderful Indian dinner in the basement of a basement, we were happy to get back to our B & B with the determination to catch up on sleep.
I had booked online a tour (Mad Max) of Stonehenge and some quaint villages for the following day. I have to say, it was a perfect way to spend the one day we would have in the area. Not only did we learn a lot from our tour guide, but we got to see a lot of English countryside. New to me info, Stonehenge existed well before the Celts and their religious order, the Druids, arrived in the area.
We also visited Avebury, another much larger circle of rocks. This was constructed in theNeolithic period, but was partially buried by the Church in in the 1200's, to be resurrected in the early 20th Century.
Our day with Mad Max continued with visits to some very old and charming villages. First was Lacock (lay-cock) where some scenes inHarry Potter and Pride and Prejudice have been filmed.
Our final stop was in Castle Combe, population 350. It has also been the backdrop for films such as Warhorse.
And Castle Combe presents this charming scene,
of hill, woods and meadows cloth'd in green.
Here grand terrestrial scenes, almost celestial nice,
makes Castle Combe, sweet vale, an earthy Paradise.
Edward Dowling (19th Century)
After our full day of sight-seeing, we ended our day with another wonderful meal and a good night's sleep. We wanted to be well rested for our trip to Southampton where we would board the Independence of the Seas.