Take me to the Cotswolds: WPC — Wanderlust

Most of our trips in the States or abroad are one-stop destinations — a major city to explore, a festival celebrating an event, a peaceful state park.  But if I could go back to one location, stay for a couple of weeks (a month even), and wander aimlessly around and through an area, it would be to The Cotswolds.

Although scenic views unfold at every turn, it’s mostly the houses I love.  Stone cottages with or without thatched roofs.  Creamy facades of stone or aged stucco.  Cottages resting on manicured lawns, round bushes snugged up to their foundations.  Comfortable homes fronted with aged-over-time wooden doors, windows edged by lace curtains, chimneys on either side, and vines meandering aimlessly upward and over.  Yes, it’s wanderlust — my long-standing desire to linger in England’s Cotswolds once again.

Do you love The Cotswolds, too?

Happy wandering — Rusha Sams

For more dreamy places to visit, check out:  Weekly Photo Challenge:  Wanderlust.

 

 

Posted in England, Travel, Weekly Photo Challenge | Tagged , , , | 24 Comments

Immerse yourself in history (but not the water) at Roman Baths of Bath, England.

Looking into the Great Bath at England's Roman Baths.

Looking into the Great Bath at England’s Roman Baths.

One of the main attractions, if not THE main attraction, in Bath, England is the 2,000-year-old site of the Roman Baths.  It’s here that you can roam ancient ruins, soak up the culture of Aquae Sulis (named for the goddess Sulis) and photograph one of the best preserved sites in England.

The 2,000-year-old Roman Baths, restored and open for touring in Bath, England.

The 2,000-year-old Roman Baths, restored and open for touring in Bath, England.

The Roman Baths haven’t always been this accessible.  Falling into ruin after the 5th century, the site was reconstructed in the 1800s by John Wood, the Elder and John Wood, the Younger who also designed The Circus in Bath.  But if you meander along the pathways besides the Great Bath, you could be standing on the very stones where Romans once stood.

View from the Terrace of the Roman Baths

View from the Terrace of the Roman Baths

The main attraction, of course, is the water itself — hot, geothermal water that flows over and percolates through limestone aquifers — the same water that enticed Romans to gather and bathe together.  Today, the water is deemed unsafe for public bathing due, in part, to the fact that it flows through lead pipes. But if you long for a safe, lavish spa experience,  Thermae Bath Spa is a nearby alternative.

Tour guide shares information on the water of the Roman Baths

Tour guide shares information on the water of the Roman Baths

If, however, you’re wishing for the restorative effect of mineral water, you can treat your body to a swig of something safe from an urn in the Grand Pump Room near the entrance. (We were told that some people show up every day for a free drink from the fountain.)

Offering safe drinking water is this decorative urn located in the Grand Pump Room of the Roman Baths.

Offering safe drinking water is this decorative urn located in the Grand Pump Room of the Roman Baths.

A walk around the terrace offers views of Bath Abbey and up-close encounters with Roman statues (suitable for today’s selfies, as it were).

Can you get Bath Abbey in the background?

Can you get Bath Abbey in the background?

Notably outstanding are curated exhibits you encounter while following the marked paths up and down, over and through the baths — like this one with over 12,000 Roman coins found at the baths (possibly cast into the water by guests) and now mounted for posterity.

Preserved and mounted Roman coins found at Roman Baths

Preserved and mounted Roman coins found at Roman Baths

Recreated on one wall of an underground alcove is a triangular section from the Bath Roman Temple. Columns, friezes, and a partial pediment surround the still intact Gorgon’s Head medallion.

Reconstructed pediment with Gorgon's Head medallion

Reconstructed pediment with Gorgon’s Head medallion

Be sure to take advantage of the audio tour detailing stops along the way in easy-to-understand detail.  As a pleasant surprise to us, we could choose the channel featuring the impressions (and humor) of  an author we love, Bill Bryson (Notes from a Small Island, Road to Little Dribbling), just by punching in the numbers designated on the signs throughout the exhibits.

Narrative on Hot Spring with optional discourse by Bill Bryson

Narrative on Hot Spring with optional discourse by Bill Bryson

Also making the Roman Baths come to life are the Romans themselves.  Well, not real Romans, of course.  But those who come to work there, dress in period garb, and demonstrate what Romans did in their spare time while talking, always in character, with tourists like us.

Dressed as a Roman, lady tells visitors of life at the Roman Baths 2,000 years ago

Dressed as a Roman, this lady tells visitors of life at the Roman Baths 2,000 years ago

The Roman Baths offer something for everyone — history buffs, lovers of art and archeology, and photographers.  Even children can have a great time talking with a Roman or reading some of the curse tablets posted on the wall — no doubt lambasting those who had stolen articles of clothing from bathers in the healing waters!  (For more on what to do with little ones in tow, check out “Visiting the Roman Baths with toddlers” from Tin Box Traveller.)

Visitors on the terrace of Roman Baths, Bath, England

Visitors on the terrace of Roman Baths, Bath, England

And check out the Roman Baths website for how you can hold an event of your own or attend one of theirs right where Romans played 2,000 years ago!

Who knows?  You may be returning often — just to sip that mineral water.

Check out that hairdo on the bust of a Roman woman.

Check out that hairdo on the bust of a Roman woman.

Thanks for traveling England with us — Bert and Rusha Sams

For more information:

The Roman Baths: https://www.romanbaths.co.uk

Twitter: @RomanBathsBath

Facebook: The Roman Baths

 

 

 

 

Posted in Destination, England | Tagged , , , , , | 27 Comments

Weekly Photo Challenge: Earth — as seen at Capitol Reef

Storm brewing at Capitol Reef.

Storm brewing at Capitol Reef.

With innumerable glimpses of this earth we live on, selecting one location has its limitations.  But Capitol Reef offers a spectacular earthly view not just on Earth Day, but every day:  rugged rocks rising tall from the earth; shades of red that change with the light; and rows of orchards offering nature’s bounty in a majestic setting.

The grandeur of Capitol Reef

The grandeur of Capitol Reef

Capitol Reef didn’t officially become a National Park until 1971 even though its geologic features were recognized as a National Monument in 1937.  And because you can drive through this park, almost close enough to reach your hand out the window and touch the bare-faced rock, you get the sense that you are part and parcel of towering red rocks where a river runs through.

Hiking Capitol Reef, Utah

Hiking Capitol Reef, Utah

The unexpected bonus of Fruita, an area of orchards on the level grounds among the rocks, elevates Capitol Reef to the top of our list of Places We’d Like To See Again,  seasonal changes being what they are.

Fruita -- Capitol Reef, Utah

Fruita — Capitol Reef, Utah

But nestled among all this earth, Fruita Schoolhouse stands alone, an inside haven of learning among nature’s grandest outside elements.  Who wouldn’t want recess to come at last when the world offers such majesty beyond the door?

Fruita Schoolhouse, Capitol Reef

Fruita Schoolhouse, Capitol Reef

It’s earth at its finest — raw, elemental, and unchanged by time.

Capitol Reef, Utah

Capitol Reef, Utah

It’s Capitol Reef. In Utah.

For more entries in this week’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Earth, click here.

And for more on Capitol Reef, visit this National Park Service site where you can download brochures and information to help you plan your own Earth Day — anytime.

 

Posted in We Saw Utah!, Weekly Photo Challenge | Tagged , , , , , | 34 Comments

Three Places to See in Bath, England — besides the Roman Baths!

Bath Abbey at Christmas with market shops below

Bath Abbey at Christmas with market shops below

Bath, England, known by tourists for its (well, of course) Roman Baths, but offers more to whet the appetite and treat the eyes.  Nestled in the county of Somerset in southwest England, Bath is a town famous for its creamy stone buildings and the scenic Avon River that runs through it.  Although most people flock to see the often-touted (for good reason) Roman Baths, three other sites will make your trip to Bath even richer.

1.  Bath Abbey (The Abbey Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul)

High vaulted ceilings in creamy white look even more airy thanks to 52 windows.

High vaulted ceilings in creamy white look even more airy thanks to 52 windows.

According to a pamphlet you can pick up in the narthex, Bath Abbey, an Anglican parish church, once served as a monastery in the 8th century. It’s endured destruction in the 1500s, restoration by Sir George Gilbert Scott in the 1600s, bombings in 1942, and continual restoration and improvement through today.

Architecturally notable is the ornate fan vaulting installed by Robert and William Vertue between 1864 and 1874.  Combined with 52 windows allowing a flood of natural light, the fan vaulting adds an open, airy feel to this cathedral built of natural Bath stone.

Superb fan vaulting in Bath Abbey

Superb fan vaulting in Bath Abbey

If you’re visiting in December, plan to be treated to one of the Bath Abbey concerts (get tickets early) and the pealing of the bells announcing the performances.  At the base of the church, shop the stalls of the Bath Christmas markets for goods such as fine wool scarves, pomander balls, and candles.

2. The Circus

The Circus, Bath, England (source: Google Images)

The Circus, Bath, England (source: Google Images)

Originally known as The King’s Circus, this circular arrangement of Georgian townhouses now known simply as The Circus was begun in 1754 by John Wood the Elder.  An architect, Wood was inspired by the prehistoric stone circles seen in England and the form of the Roman Colosseum.  Alas, Wood the Elder died before the project began, but his son, John Wood the Younger completed it in 1758.

Georgian architecture of The Circus in Bath.

Georgian architecture of The Circus in Bath.

A closer look at the stonework reveals symbols such as acorns (tributes to the Druids?), serpents, and Masonic emblems.

Architectural detail below a second-story window at The Circus in Bath.

Architectural detail below a second-story window at The Circus in Bath.

Our driver took us to the center grassy area (formerly a reservoir) beneath a gnarly tree to demonstrate the reverberating nature of sound bouncing off the circular formation of stone residences.  And, you, too, should try this: clap your hands and listen as acoustics take over and send that sound right back to you.

Fun thing to try: Clap your hands in the middle of The Circus to hear sound in the round!

Fun thing to try: Clap your hands in the middle of The Circus to hear sound in the round!

Similar to The Circus and designed by John Wood the Younger, the Royal Crescent (celebrating its 250th anniversary in 2017) is a semi-circular row of 30 terrace houses representing the finest in Georgian architecture.  In front of this impressive location for films and TV series, is a “ha-ha,” a recessed area in front of the Crescent designed to be a barrier to livestock, but one that still allows an unobstructed view of the homes.  A stay in the Royal Crescent Hotel located in the midst of the row homes would be an impressive stay indeed!

View of The Royal Crescent with a ha-ha in foreground.

View of The Royal Crescent with a ha-ha in foreground.

3.  Pulteney Bridge

Drive past Pulteney Bridge, park your car, and snap away.  One of only four bridges in the world lined with shops, Pulteney Bridge hovers over the Avon River offering a postcard-worthy site to see and send back home.

View of Pulteney Bridge above the Avon River in Bath, England.

View of Pulteney Bridge above the Avon River in Bath, England.

And if you’re into shopping for quality products and souvenirs, stop in at Guildhall Market for local treats like flags, scarves, and teapots or grab a bite at Guildhall Delicatessen where scotch eggs and pork pies will fill you up with a genuine taste of England.

There’s plenty to see and do in Bath.  And we haven’t even seen the headliner: the Roman Baths. We’re saving that for our next post!

Rusha and Bert Sams

For more information:

Bath Abbey: http://www.bathabbey.org/

The Circus: https://visitbath.co.uk/things-to-do/the-circus-p56201

The Royal Crescent: https://visitbath.co.uk/things-to-do/the-royal-crescent-p56191

Pulteney Bridge: https://visitbath.co.uk/things-to-do/pulteney-bridge-p56151Pulteney Bridge: 

Wikipedia:  Bath Abbey; The Circus; The Royal Crescent; Pulteney Bridge

Posted in England, Travel | Tagged , , , , , | 23 Comments

The Bard’s Beginnings: Shakespeare’s Birthplace, Stratford-upon-Avon

Just walking the short walk to the front door gave me chills.  After all, I was at Shakespeare's Birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon!

Just walking the short walk to the front door gave me chills. After all, I was at Shakespeare’s Birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon!

Surely no self-respecting English teacher (myself included) would return home from a trip to England without visiting Stratford-upon-Avon.  After all, this birthplace and home of William Shakespeare appears in British lit books and “bardly” publications that we share with students and dream of seeing in person . . . someday.

Well, my someday came, and here my husband and I were staring squarely at the place of William Shakespeare’s birth in 1564, amazed that it wasn’t as humble a structure as we would have suspected.  In fact, this half-timbered house was the largest dwelling on Henley Street when John and Mary Shakespeare lived there and raised eight children, William being the third one born.

Shakespeare's home on Henley Street

Shakespeare’s home on Henley Street

Touring the home today offers you a glimpse of what life would be like for John Shakespeare, Mayor of Stratford,  and his brood. Judging from what most people would consider a rather smallish home for 10, you might wonder how so many people could live comfortably there.  But live they did.  And in style.  Leaded glass windows and aged-over-time hardwood floors have endured a steady stream of visitors, eager to peek into rooms and imagine life in the 16th century.  And a table set as it would have been in Shakespeare’s time brings dinnertime to life.  Overall, Shakespeare’s Birthplace is an impressive home, even by today’s standards.

Boys' bedroom, Shakespeare's Birthplace

Boys’ bedroom, Shakespeare’s Birthplace

Table set for dinner as it would have been in the 16th century

Table set for dinner as it would have been in the 16th century

Moving through the house and imagining what life was like “back in the day” was one thing, but what enhanced the experience were the performers dressed in period attire.  Like this affable soul who serenaded us inside the front door with lute accompaniment.

Entertaining visitors with his lute in Shakespeare's Birthplace

Entertaining visitors with his lute in Shakespeare’s Birthplace

And this patient, happy lady who led a hands-on demo for children in the art of making a pouch.

Demonstrating needle arts at Shakespeare's Birthplace

Demonstrating needle arts at Shakespeare’s Birthplace

Although December is not the best time for touring the gardens, there’s evidence of what active members of Shakespeare Birthplace Trust and area volunteers have done to restore and maintain the grounds as well as the home.

Climbing vines at the side door entrance to Shakespeare's Birthplace

Climbing vines at the side door entrance to Shakespeare’s Birthplace

Bottom line on the whole experience?  It’s a tour worth taking — and not just for English teachers.  It’s history, architecture, lifestyle, joy, all rolled into one.  Headed to Stratford-upon-Avon?  Then, don’t miss Shakespeare’s Birthplace.

Even the back of this half-timbered house is impressive.

Even the back of this half-timbered house, Shakespeare’s Birthplace, is impressive.

For more information:

The Shakespeare Centre, Henley Street, Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire.

https://www.shakespeare.org.uk/visit/shakespeares-birthplace/

 

Posted in England, Travel | Tagged , , , , , | 14 Comments

Weekly Photo Challenge: Dense

A density of blossoms: Tulip Poplar tree in spring

A density of blossoms: Tulip Poplar tree in spring

It’s only in early spring that Magnolia Soulangeana blooms in profusion.  But when delicate pink blossoms burst forth, that dense, full-on blooming is something not to be missed.

Early morning light offers barely pink, almost purplish color.

Early morning light offers barely pink, almost purplish color.

As the first pink starts to show, I brave early morning chill to note blooms in their infancy.  Sweater weather in East Tennessee with a sweet reward.

Open and reaching out -- announcing spring in East Tennessee.

Open and reaching out — a Magnolia Soulangeana announces spring in East Tennessee.

I stand underneath a mature tree in our neighborhood hoping to get a sidewise glimpse of lower branch blooms.  But mostly, I look upward, noting how barely-there morning light brightens the inner whites ensconced by outer pinks.

Looking closely at white inner petals and the pink veining on outer ones.

Looking closely at white inner petals and the pink veining on outer ones.

It’s a treat we give ourselves, those of us lucky enough to be near a Magnolia Soulangeana (that we locally call a Saucer Magnolia) in early spring.  A true reward for getting out and looking up.

My neighborhood treat: Magnolia Grandiflora in the spring!

My neighborhood treat: a Saucer Magnolia in the spring!

 

For more photos that meet the Weekly Photo Challenge: Dense prescription, click here and be amazed!

 

 

Posted in Gardens, Photography, Weekly Photo Challenge | Tagged , , | 27 Comments

Sidewalk Magic: Dogwood Arts Chalk Walk 2015

Artist working at Chalk Walk 2015

Jessie Langley works on her entry for Chalk Walk 2015. Winner: Second Place, College Single Artist.

Because so many people look forward to the Dogwood Arts Chalk Walk each year, we’re republishing this post featuring some of the amazing art from Chalk Walk 2015.  The 2017 event will be held at Market Square Knoxville on Saturday, April 1 — all day!

For the seventh year in a row, artists (professional, novice, and student) turned ordinary sidewalks in Knoxville’s Market Square into magical canvases for Dogwood Arts Chalk Walk 2015.  Arriving mid-morning gets you a view of artists at work.  So you may need another visit after lunch to see finished art. Here’s a little of both.

We began by talking with Michael Gunnels sketching this sassy, bug-eyed cat.

And then watched Curtis Glover capture the Knoxville skyline and Tennessee logo in chalk.

Knoxville collage by Curtis Glover

Knoxville collage by Curtis Glover

Some artists campaigned for votes. Like Blythe Lundberg.  And why not? Cute snail on a quilt-pattern background — all finished by lunchtime.  No small feat, we thought.

Snail design with blue background by Blythe Lundgren. Vote for #16!

Snail design with blue background by Blythe Lundgren. Vote for #16!

It didn’t escape us that young, young people were hunched over these drawings, too.  Like the team from Sequoyah Elementary slamming colorful gumballs into their orange machine. And their reward?  First Place in Elementary division.

This sweet entry done by kids from the Montessori School had something extra: origami birds laid on top.

Montessori School entry -- Chalk Walk 2015

Montessori School entry — Chalk Walk 2015

When we finally looked up, we saw folks on the square in the middle of a party of sorts.  So much going on — musicians, magicians, and kids sketching chalk drawings in their own area reserved for kid spontaneity.

Even furry friends got into the action.  Like this dog belonging to a hard-working artist who kept shushing the dog away from the art only to find the pet smack dab in the middle of the chalk — again.

But I like it here!

But I like it here!

Winners

Best of Show

Drawing the most attention, and for good reason, was Shane Sandberg‘s astronaut. Winning Best of Show for detail and a sense of humor (Space guy’s holding a drink called a Shaneberg), Sandberg’s drawing took chalk art to a new level.  Literally.

Working from a picture, Shane Sandberg adds exquisite detail to his astronaut chalk drawing.

Working from a picture, Shane Sandberg adds exquisite detail to his astronaut chalk drawing.

Astronaut holding a Shaneberg by Shane Sandberg. (Instagram: @theshaneberg)

Astronaut holding a Shaneberg by Shane Sandberg. (Instagram: @theshaneberg)

People’s Choice Award

Who doesn’t like Anna and Elsa?  It took hard work all day by Deirdre Pokrzywa and Sarah Bellah to bring these young ladies — and Olaf — to life in chalk

People's Choice Award from the movie Frozen by Deirdre Pokrzywa and Sarah Bellah

People’s Choice Award from the movie Frozen by Deirdre Pokrzywa and Sarah Bellah

Other Favorites

On the Market Square stage, Jessie Steinberg (2014 Best of Show winner) wowed us with detail: a very friendly dog in a garden setting.  (Winner 2015:  First Place, Adult Division)

Nearby, the girls we featured in a previous post (Weekly Photo Challenge: Afloat) were busy free handing a drawing of a girl in a koi pond.  (At least that’s what it looked like to us.) The dreamy effect and the matching koi patterns weren’t lost on us: these two UT Elementary Education majors said they were enjoying the design work as much as the hard work.  (Winner: Second Place, College Collaborative)

After our lunch, we stumbled (literally, since there were so many people in close quarters) upon other notables that struck our fancy.

Old truck by Cody Swaggerty. Winner: Second Place, Adult Single Artist

Old truck by Cody Swaggerty. Winner: Second Place, Adult Single Artist

Diver by the McQuilkin Family. Winner: Second Place, Family Division.

Diver by the McQuilkin Family. Winner: Second Place, Family Division.

Striped figure by Elena Lawson. Winner: First Place, Middle School Single Artist

Striped figure by Elena Lawson. Winner: First Place, Middle School Single Artist

Barry Gibb by Erin Pelicano

Barry Gibb by Erin Pelicano

Lauryn Darby's entry. Winner: First Place, College Single Artist

Lauryn Darby’s entry. Winner: First Place, College Single Artist

Our vote for best detail: Chalk Walk 2015.

Our vote for best detail is this portrait by Sarah and Abigail Gibson.

Great work, don’t you think?  We’re still wondering how artists 1) decide what to draw, 2) select colors and chalks, and 3) stay in the bent-over position for hours.

Mark this on your calendar for 2016.  It’s just one of many artsy events of the Dogwood Arts Festival. See you in Knoxville next year?

Dogwood Arts Chalk Walk 2015

List of winners:  http://www.dogwoodarts.com/chalk-walk/

Sponsors:

Avanti Savoia: http://www.avantisavoia.com/

Jerry’s Artarama: http://www.jerrysartarama.com/

For more information:

“Chalk it up as a great weekend.” The Blue Streak.  http://bluestreak.moxleycarmichael.com/2015/04/16/chalk-it-up-as-a-great-weekend/

 

Posted in Tennessee | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

It IS easy being green in coastal South Carolina!

Beautiful greens ready for the RBC Heritage golf tournament in Hilton Head.

Coastal South Carolina is greening up with fresh shoots of spartina grass on Daufuskie, sprigs of resurrection vine at Harbor Town, amd waterfront greenery at Palmetto Bluff.  Not to mention the greens of Harbor Town Links ready for the RBC Heritage golf tournament.  It IS easy being green in South Carolina!

For more green, head over to this week’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: It IS Being Green. 

Posted in South Carolina, Weekly Photo Challenge | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments

Weekly Photo Challenge: Atop

Two towers adorn a Bucharest church.

Two towers adorn a Bucharest church.

When you ride through a new country, sometimes the only pictures you take are either blurry landscapes flashing before your eyes or architectural details atop buildings you see briefly seen from a back seat.  And in Romania, you can get a crick in your neck looking up at the some of the best toppers in the world.

A stately bell tower sits atop Sinai Monastery Old Church in Romania.

A stately bell tower sits atop Sinai Monastery Old Church in Romania.

Looking up at the top of Prejmer fortified church in Transylvania, Romania.

Looking up at the top of Prejmer fortified church in Transylvania, Romania.

Classy Romanian steeple -- made of wood?

Classy Romanian wooden steeple.

Look up at the WordPress Weekly Challenge: Atop for more of what’s on top!

 

Posted in Weekly Photo Challenge | Tagged , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Storybook charm: England’s thatched cottages

A true storybook cottage in The Cotswolds

A true storybook cottage in The Cotswolds

Not many household adornments ooze more charm than cozy thatched roof cottages, and there’s no better place to find them than in England.  A recent article in the Wall Street Journal called them “chocolate box cottages” because a photo of one them would be adorable to adorn a box of chocolates.  Made of straw or reed, thatched roofs are said to provide a cooler summer and warmer winter for residents who can pay up for what is now a luxury topper.  And, according to that same article, thatched roof homes have not only held their value, but risen in price considerably.  But during the Bronze Age when thatched roofs came into their own, thatching was just what you did to use what was on hand.

Neolithic thatched cottages at Stonehenge Visitor Centre, Salisbury, England.

Neolithic thatched cottages at Stonehenge Visitor Centre, Salisbury, England.

We first encountered thatching at the Stonehenge Visitor Centre where Neolithic cottages stood out back, a working demo, so to speak, that invited onlookers to move in close and take a look.

A couple of thatchers busy at work caught our attention, and we noted that the craft resembled basket weaving (well, sort of) since they seemed to be weaving the reeds under and over a foundation of sticks.

When you get up close, it sort of resembles basket weaving, don't you think?

When you get up close, it sort of resembles basket weaving, don’t you think?

When we left Stonehenge headed to the Cotswolds, our driver spotted a roofer in action.  Being the ever-vigilant, ever-attentive driver that he was, he screeched to a stop, and with cameras in hand we filed out of the car to catch a shot of a thatcher on his ladder hard at work.  (Not for the faint of heart, really.) When he saw us watching, he stopped a moment to wave, and then got right back to it.

Thatcher at work in The Cotswolds

Just another day of thatching!

One house, out of all the ones we saw, seemed to have it all.  We noted it in passing, and again, our driver took a U-turn so as to park right in front so we could catch this beauty. Not only did the roof with its patterned topper exude charm and mastery of design, the whole yard merited a second or third look. (And the concrete dogs weren’t too shabby, either!)

A storybook cottage with thatched roof in The Cotswolds, England.

A storybook cottage with thatched roof in The Cotswolds, England.

So, when in the Cotswolds at least, drive slowly.  You don’t want to miss these “chocolate box cottages.”  They really are as charming as you heard.  If you win the lottery, however, you can do more than just snap pictures as we did.  You’ll be living that storybook dream.

Thanks for touring the English countryside with us!  — Bert and Rusha

For more information:

Bloomfield, Ruth. “An Uptick in Britain’s Cottage Industry.” Wall Street Journal (January 27, 2017).  Retrieved from: http://www.mansionglobal.com/articles/52407-an-uptick-in-britain-s-thatched-roof-cottage-industry

Posted in Destination, England, Travel | Tagged , , , , | 34 Comments