02 June 2009

Vacation: Salisbury, England

After the cruise ship docked in Southampton, we rented a car and drove to Salisbury. I looked forward to this destination as I had just finished reading Sarum by Edward Rutherfurd. That novel is about the history of the Salisbury area from the geological creation of isle of Britain to the 1980s.

Before we went to our hotel, we went to Wilton and toured Wilton House. Belonging to the Earl of Pembroke, Wilton House is filled with works of art by famous painters, including Rembrandt and Reynolds. The house is famous for its Single Cube and Double Cube rooms. 

The grounds of Wilton House were lovely with beautiful trees and the River Nadder flowing nearby. There was even a swan floating in the river!

The town of Wilton itself has a gorgeous Italian-style church that we also visited.

Our hotel, the Legacy Rose and Crown, was on the road between Salisbury and Wilton. After two trips between the towns and one very expensive cell phone call, we finally managed to find the place. Our room was quite nice, and the hotel was in a perfect location. Breakfast was a little strange, however. 

They had a buffet with cereal and fruit and yogurt, which wasn't too bad. You could also order a hot breakfast. Mom and I both got scrambled eggs. They arrived on a large plate in a tower, like they'd been placed in a Jell-O mold. It was the weirdest thing, and I should have taken a picture! When mashed onto the plate, they covered the entire thing. There must have been about six eggs per person! And the taste. Oh, the taste. I could not eat two bites. They smelled awful and were very pale and sickly looking. I didn't even know eggs could look sickly, but these did.

I remained wary of scrambled eggs for the rest of the trip.

We walked to the cathedral, built in 1265. The spire of the cathedral towers over the surrounding countryside, and we enjoyed walking through the nave and cloister.

In the cloister, we saw Wolfie, the cathedral cat. He looked a lot like my own cat but, of course, was much nicer. I enjoyed petting him for a while.

As there was a confirmation or something happening that day, we were unable to go in the chapter house. The chapter house is where an original version of the Magna Carta resides, so we would have to return.

The next day we returned to the cathedral, and I took the Tower Tour while Mom waited below. The tour was fascinating, and I highly recommend it. We even managed to be by the bells when the hour struck noon. Wow, was that loud!

The views from the tower were breathtaking and well worth the climb.

Mom, meanwhile, had an eventful time waiting for me. She ran into some of our table mates from the cruise ship!

Then we went to the chapter house to see the Magna Carta. Amazing to see a document written in 1215 that is the basis for so many governments and legal rights around the world!

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