We didn’t have class yesterday (Friday), so I woke up and went to a place I’ve been wanting to visit: Royal Victoria Park. According to Wikipedia, it opened in 1830 by 11-year-old Princess Victoria; I can’t believe I was walking around somewhere that’s 180 years old. When I first started walking around it looked like the park was literally just a sidewalk through the woods, but after following a few dog-walkers who looked like they knew what they were doing, I came across some really interesting stuff. The park is actually 57 acres, so I had lots to explore. The city is overly crowded with tourists this weekend, but the park was surprisingly empty. At first, all I found a huge grassy field with an incredible view of the city, but then I stumbled upon The Great Dell, which was a small wooded area that contained a monument to Shakespeare. This was a really great find; it was so old that I could barely make out what the inscription said. I also ventured into the botanical gardens, which isn’t much of a garden this time of year, but it had lots of strange statues. I saw so few people in the gardens that for a while, I thought I had broken in. I also came across a golf course with a public footpath, which had some more great views. Really, any hill without a tree line gives you amazing landscapes of the city. It was a relaxing morning. I officially know my way around Bath, though, which is exciting to say! Wandering around by myself in a strange country seems completely normal.
Today, we had a girls day! Our tour guide, Tony, had told us about a popular bike path that goes through the countryside, so we (Allie, Mary Kate, Sarah, Hannah, Michaela, Savannah, Rachel, and I) decided to try it out. We took a bus that dropped us off at a bike/boat shop where we could rent some for the day. Actually, if I’m speaking like a Brit, I’d say “where we could hire some for the day”. It ended up being a 10-mile stretch down the Avon Canal, which was really beautiful. We barely ever cycled in a place that wasn’t side-by-side with the canal. There were tons of people living in their boats on the canal. When we made it to the next town, Bradford on Avon, we stopped for a snack. Ice cream, of course. It’s neat to see all these different places, even if it’s only for a few minutes. We would bike in the woods for a while then come out into the middle of a field; I loved it. If you didn’t know I love the outdoors, now you do! Nature has always been a way I see God communicating with us. Although it was a chilly day (it’s getting a lot colder here), it felt so nice to be outdoors and experiencing England.
Lastly, a new word: rocket. Can you guess what that means? …cucumber. Sometimes England is really weird.