17.11.2018 - 22.11.2018 45 °F
The plane ride was good, a picnic with complimentary wine and cheese and crackers that I’d brought were a great way to start the flight.
After customs, we found the location of our bus ride to Winchester then found some Italian coffee to pass the 3 hours we had to wait. The bus ride would have been interesting if we would not have kept falling asleep.
We arrived in downtown Winchester, hopped into a cab and went to our hotel. We wanted to go to dinner in downtown Winchester but couldn’t find the wherewithal to leave so ate at the hotel restaurant. This was actually a good choice as the food was good and gluten-free.
The buffet breakfast had lots of choices so we could fill up on food that would last for several hours. We then hopped the city bus just outside of the hotel on the main road and went into the town.
We didn’t have a plan for today, just go to the Visitor’s Center again, and then go to the Winchester Cathedral. After that, we wanted to see the Great Hall if we had time or walk around the Christmas market or go where the spirit moved.
We went to Winchester and found the Cathedral and found a tour guide, this is free with an entry ticket. Our guide was actually from the states but has lived in the UK for many years. She gave us a great introduction to the site. After the hour+ tour, we went back and looked at 1 part of an original bible. The book was of interest to us because of its age.
I wanted to see Jane Austen’s memorial and burial site. I have loved Jane Austen for many years and have read and reread her books.
Having spent several hours at the Cathedral we were getting hungry. The guides had told us about a pub that they thought was great so we tried to find it. Instead, we got lost and ended back at the Visitor’s Center. I’m suspecting that they were getting tired of our questions, but they gave us another map with the location of the pub circled on it. The person helping also has Celiac and she located safe restaurants on the map for us.
We started walking but were distracted by a farmers market, then saw a grocery store and remembered that we had forgotten a corkscrew for the wine we brought. While we were in the store we remembered that we also wanted to buy more wine. Well no corkscrew or decent wine, but they directed us across the street. And by then we remembered that we also needed a 3-prong adaptor to charge my laptop.
We went across the street but didn’t find any decent wine or any corkscrews. And after searching at yet another store thought that we’d look for the adaptor. That was yet another runaround but finally found both a corkscrew and adaptor.
Finally, we found the restaurant we’d been looking for only to find that there wouldn’t be a table free for the evening. We went out of the restaurant but didn’t know where to go, we hadn’t eaten since breakfast and I wasn’t doing well at all. A man stopped and asked if we were lost and I answered that we hadn’t eaten since breakfast, we couldn’t eat at the place recommended and we had no idea where we needed to go. He pointed out a street with lots of restaurants (one recommended by the visitors center earlier but we’d forgotten). We went up the street and popped into a pub.
I ordered food at the bar only to find that we needed a table number (I forgot all about that) so we had to cancel the order and find a table in the very full pub. We found us a table, ordered our food which turned out to be very good and very inexpensive.
We finished up at the pub and got back to Winchester Cathedral in time for Evensong. We like these services as there is music in these wonderful cathedrals for no charge.
After the service, we were freezing cold (it was cold all day) so we had another cup of mulled wine then ran to catch our bus. Alas, we’d missed it and the next bus wasn’t going to arrive for another 40 min. We found another pub and had a “spot of tea”.
Finally, after a long day of running around, we made it back to our room. After some wine and cheese, we were done.
Tomorrow is another day!