Saturday, May 3, 2014

A Day in Bath

Water is best.
I breathed a sigh of relief as I arrived in Bath with my suitcase. The only thing is my new bleu canard Lipault suitcase has a small rip. Fortunately, one of my new companions travels with duct tape. I did a small repair job and I do have some vintage Paris travels stickers at home so my suitcase will be personalized. Now I know why BHV in Paris sells suitcase jackets!
free walking tours
The city of Bath has provided free walking tours to visitors for 80 years.  The tours last for about 2 hours and provide an overview of the history of the city. The original baths were built by the Romans but it was in the 18th century that Bath became a popular health and relaxation destination for the nouveau-riche.
the King's bath
John Wood the Elder and John Wood the Younger designed leafy garden squares, promenades and columned Georgian rentals for those who could afford to spend the season from September to May.
Bathing, dancing, gambling and flirting were the principal activities of the visitors who took every opportunity to see and be seen.

After our walk, we visited a Georgian house at #1 Royal Crescent where we learned about how the newly affluent merchant class lived during the 18th century. The exhibits showed the daily lives above and below stairs. Did you know that 18th century gentlemen relieved themselves in a pot in the corner of the dining room?

I have been missing my French life so yesterday we had dinner at Bistro La Barrique. They serve petits plats there and I enjoyed my toasted grilled asparagus salad with sea bass and haricots verts.
I finished my meal with an assortment of local cheeses and a glass of chablis.  Parfait!

Since we are heading for the coast, we decided to go to see H.M.S. Pinafore at the Theatre-Royal Bath.
The theatre, which opened in 1805 has been restored to its past glory and the performance was lively.  So much to see and to do and so far away from the Shetland Islands.
 So far away from last week-end in Whalsay!
Sometimes my head seems to spin from all that I have seen and experienced in the last two months! So many beautiful places and such rich experiences…. More than I could imagine seeing in a lifetime! Tomorrow we catch an early train to St. Ives where we will be meeting with hfholidays to explore the Cornwall coast.

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