Day 11 – East Kennett to Harrogate – August 21, 2013
Today is going to be another fun day. After checking out, we headed the short distance to Avebury to see the stone circle and the avenue of standing stones leading to it. Alongside the West Kennet Avenue, is a small lay-by you can park in with a permanently parked police car with banners in all of the windows reminding folks to take their valuables or put them out of sight and lock their cars.
With the way the avenue sweeps up and over the hill, some of the stones wind up on the other side of the road.
After our time on the avenue, we went in to Avebury to see the other stones. There was a great car park along the way – pay and display (not a problem) – but the machines were all locked down or wrapped in bin bags. Was it safe to park? Not being sure, we moved on and went to the car park at The Red Lion, yet another pay and display. I hopped out and got some photos whilst hubby attempted to program “Sat Nav Sally” for our next destination but she was having none of it.
We went back to the lay-by alongside West Kennet Avenue, hoping that our ‘electronic travelling companion’ regain her satellite signal and find herself. I left hubby to it and got a couple of interesting pics of things I hadn’t seen before but when you really stopped and looked, it couldn’t have been more obvious.
I think this stone looks like a shark. When we were walking along the avenue earlier, I never gave it a thought. But a second look and… well what do you think? A shark? Or something else?
Here’s another one with different appearances depending on the angle you view it from. This first angle looks like a face with a rather large nose.
And from this angle, perhaps a chess piece? I’m thinking the knight. What do you think?
“Sat Nav Sally” finally found herself and our final destination was programmed in along with our stop for lunch. There were a number of other ‘white horses’ in the area and one on our way to Tewkesbury. We thought that since it was a short drive we’d have time to go check it out… that was until we hit a construction tailback and we were in it for what seemed to be forever. We were sat for at least half an hour. So much for a side trip to photograph another white horse.
Linn was one of the winners of my book swag pack from my e-launch splash so we had agreed I would bring it with me since we were getting together anyway. Much to my surprise, she gave me a pink, agate angel related to her Angels series (being published by HarperImpulse as Falling). I can spill the beans now about her publishing deal because she’s made it public.
It was great to meet Linn and her husband but yet again, too much to talk about and too little time. Still it was a brilliant time and I know we’ll do it again in the future.
Back onto the motorway, we headed through the West Midlands and saw places from the opposite side as we did the day before on our way south.
Since we had a lot of driving to do, stops for photo ops weren’t included in the grand scheme of things – at least until we got to Harrogate.
We passed some interesting castle/abbey ruins but will have to add them to our bucket list of places to visit.
Even with arriving in the area at rush hour compounded with the festival at Leeds, traffic wasn’t unbearable. Okay, it took a bit to whoa down the wee rental car, or perhaps it was my lead foot, as I’d been cruising along at speeds up to 80 mph. What can I say… keep up with the flow of traffic or get run over.
Maybe it was just the map but I thought when we arrived in Harrogate, our accommodations would be on our left, but it was on the right. A quick turnaround at the first set of traffic lights and I found us a place to park on the street a few doors down.
We were quickly made comfortable and shown our room. A bit of finagling and I could get our rental car into the car park, or take advantage of the complimentary pay and display badge. The badge won out.
After the obligatory room photos had been taken, we went out for a walk about looking for a place to grab a bite to eat and a bevvie.
The impressive Royal Baths building is now host to a number of other businesses. The centre section is home to what appears to be an upmarket Chinese Restaurant. We got that impression from the attire folks who were coming and going from there. Definitely not a t-shirt and jeans venue.
We walked up Parliament Street and found the entrance to Wetherspoons through the former Turkish Baths/Winter Gardens entrance to the building. Very impressive! We found a table downstairs and sat for a bit before ordering a beer each and our meal. Unbeknownst to us, we had to do the business at the bar and let them know our table number. Hubby brought our drinks back to the table and our meal was brought by the staff. It was supposedly a 20 minute wait for food because they were busy but neither one of us think it took that long.
Fed, watered (okay, it was beered) and content, we made our way back to the guest house and got settled in for the night.
Let’s play SEEKING SARAH SHAND!
Tomorrow, we’ll be back in Scotland but not before a visit with a friend who used to work for Quarriers who we’ve not seen in ten years. Will be brilliant to see her again and get caught up on all the goss(ip).