UK Road Trip

September 8, 2014 —York to Stratford Upon Avon

We had one last good breakfast with the Lyndalls at Ashbourne House in York.  Paul and Julie were very nice, and though there isn’t air conditioning at the B & Bs we’ve stayed at, the room here had windows that opened and a nice ceiling fan.  The parking was especially cramped, and you left your keys with Paul so he could move cars.  All the places we’ve stayed at make it a challenge to dry and curl your hair, as bathrooms are like cruise ships and have no outlets for anything but shavers.  Many B & Bs don’t have a mirror in the bedroom near an outlet either, so it isn’t always easy.  We left York after breakfast to drive to Stratford Upon Avon, arriving a little after noon.  This was the easiest drive of any as it was mostly 3 and 4-lane roads, with only short sections of 2-lanes.  Jay drove the 150 miles in about 2 1/2 hours.  Gayle had emailed us that they hoped to be on the train from Liverpool that arrived in Stratford at 12:41, so we drove to the train station and they arrived just a few minutes later.  Back to Arden Way Guesthouse, where Jeanne had our rooms ready.  We walked a short distance to Le Pierre Bistro, where we had a nice lunch of salads (Jay had steak and frites and Jerry had pigeon in puff pastry for an appetizer).  After lunch the Dustruds went for a walk around town, and we drove about a mile to Anne Hathaway’s (Shakespeare’s wife) Cottage with the Lyndalls.  The exterior is very attractive and the gardens beautiful (we were in Stratford and Bath many years ago but don’t remember exactly where we went—it was before the time of digital cameras and Jay uploading and labeling pictures every evening).  We met up with the Dustruds and all walked across the Avon to an Italian restaurant called Carluccios.  We had very good food and good-humored waiters.  After dinner we walked the short distance to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre where we saw  The White Devil  in the small Swan theatre.  It was quite a strange story and none of us totally understood why they were all killing each other.  We were in the first and second rows, right next to the thrust stage, and at one point Jerry became part of the show when a note a character was talking about was dropped, intentionally, in his lap.  The actors were only a few feet from us at times, and they often made eye contact.  It was a unique theater experience for all of us.  We were all tired and went to bed after our short walk from the theater to the B & B.

Breakfast at Ashbourne House

The drive to Stratford Upon Avon

Waiting for the Dustruds at Stratford Upon Avon train station

Jerry ordered pigeon appetizer (on left)

Ward and Marylee at Anne Hathaway’s Cottage

Anne Hathaway’s Cottage - no canoodling on this bench

Anne Hathaway’s Cottage - garden

Royal Shakespeare Theatre

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