Bath Time

Trip Start Apr 02, 2012
Trip End Jun 04, 2012

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Where I stayed
The Gilbert's House

Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Friday, April 6, 2012

I’ve been in Bath (pronounced “Bawth”, per the locals) for a few days now and have learned a lot about this ancient little city. First of all, they say it was first established in AD 43 by the Romans... the big draw being the natural hot springs. Of course the Romans promptly built elaborate temples and bath houses over the springs, believing the springs to be a gift from the gods with healing powers. In other words, it was an ancient spa retreat. Since the Romans, countless other historical figures have come to Bath to enjoy the supposed healing benefits of the springs and drink this special, earth heated water. I went and checked out the Roman Baths, which are actually buried under the city, but have since been excavated. The water bubbles and steams in the old pools and before you head back above ground towards the exit, they let you taste it. It’s hot and smells like sulfur and tastes like... pennies, maybe... or pences, rather. It was an experience, but I won’t be using it to make my tea any time soon. Speaking of tea, I’ve had lots of it. What else have I done since being here? 

Tuesday we arrived and I got my first sneak peek of Bath before having an amazing home cooked meal and some bubbly with Julia and her family. Wednesday, Julia and I wandered around downtown Bath doing a little window shopping, trying on British wedding hats and other shenanigans. In the afternoon we did a free walking tour of Bath that is given by the citizens, which was a great way to get to know their city. Then it started to hail on us, so we ran! In the evening I was introduced to my first English pub. When you order wine here, they ask if you want a small glass or a large glass. Of course I wanted a large glass, and large it was. Julia’s parents have a tight circle of “Royal Crescent” friends, who were enjoying dinner at the same pub, so they joined us and then a bottle of wine quickly arrived. They were splendid people! In fact, tomorrow I hope to “pop by” and meet their fluffy cat, Alfie. Apparently he’s never met an American before and I get to be the first. It's an honor, really. 

Wednesday was more of the same. We checked out an old Georgian garden, wandered the city, did a bit of grocery shopping, teas, coffees, and historical facts. We headed back to the pub in the evening to meet the Royal Crescent crew and dine on fish and chips. I was surprised by how much these particular British know about the Alamo. 

Friday... the Roman Baths. And I tried marmite. That was enough for one day! 

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