Thursday, April 13, 2006

A grand day out

I was getting quite bored on Wednesday morning and I thought to myself I better go out and do something, instead of playing on my PC or watching daytime television. Initially I was just going to mooch into town and look around, but I thought it was a bit pointless seeing as I had been in town the previous day to get hold of some Canadian dollars.

I had enjoyed my previous short trip to Dartmoor on the weekend and decided to go somewhere else today, though not knowing where to visit I filled up my car with petrol and headed onto the M5 and then onto the A303 going towards London. I must have driven around 90 miles or so and spotted a sign for Stonehenge.

I stopped here for a short break and decided to stump up the princely sum of five pounds and ninety pence to visit the famous stones. Incidentally you get to listen to a free audio guide inside the area, which makes the price a bit more bearable. I spent in the region of about half an hour or so walking around the stones and talking photos. I remember when I was young that you were allowed much closer to these stones, but these days you seem to be a fair distance away.

I drank some green tea whilst in my car and then decide to leave the car park and head off somewhere else.

On exiting the car park I notice a guy wearing a hat thumbing for a lift. I pull over onto the side and ask him where he is headed, he replies in an Italian accent Salisbury. I wasn't planning on going in that direction, but he convinces me to go that way as it's only about 9 miles away and I didn't have anything better to do.

His name is Massimo and he's from Sardinia, Italy. He explains he is here for 2 weeks visiting various places before he has to return to Italy at the end of the month. He mentions that he is heavily involved in music and does some band promotion work.

We arrive in Salisbury and notice a sign for Old Sarum. He reads out a section from his Rough Guide to England book which sounds very promising....hell even the English Heritage site promotes it well.

When we arrive we are sadly very disappointed, there lies very little in the way of remains of the castle, though the hill and what used to be a moat is quite impressive. We agree three pounds is a bit too much to spend on some old castle remains and decide to walk round instead.

Then we park up in the town centre and head towards the nearest pub for a quick drink before heading to Salisbury Cathedral.
The Cathedral was definitely a lot more impressive than Old Sarum and some of the buildings nearby are also very nice, reminds me a lot of Exeter.

It is approaching 4:30pm and I say I must head back to Exeter and offer Massimo a lift somewhere as there is not a huge amount to do in Salisbury. He agrees and I gave him a lift to Glastonbury, where we arrive a bit later than planned after missing the exit on the A303. I park in the town centre conveniently close to a backpacker's hotel, where Massimo dumps his backpack.

He asks a local for directions to the nearest McDonald's and gets told the nearest one is in New York! Sensing this guy was a local I quickly follow up by asking where the nearest fish n chip shop is, he happily points us in the right direction to a local award winning chip shop.

After eating some chips I say goodbye to Massimo and wish him good luck on his journeys as I head back to Exeter.


MarciNYC said...

Wow! Great photos! I'm jealous that you're within a days drive of such history. I really must look at my calendar and find a way to get back to Mother England for holiday. So much to see, so little time. :)

nac said...

Yes you could say I'm quite lucky to be able to visit the nice english countryside, especially as it's relatively close to me. It's interesting the things you miss, until a tourist points them out. I must visit more places in the UK, I have a tendency to visit the more exotic locations in the world. Glad you like the photos, there are some more at :-