Monday, 12 May 2008

No holds Bard

A few days ago we got back from lunch to find a large marquee on the lawn outside our window. This was our new view. Apparently there was going to be a wedding and it was finishing at midnight. We decided we should vacate the premises, particularly when S heard stories of previous weddings. We knew we'd miss out on some splendid food (I hope the bride got the caterers in) but we thought it was the best course of action. S did lots of research, vox pops and surfing and we studied maps. We decided to hire a car and head to Will's place (that's Stratford not Buckingham palace).
We had to pick the car up from Luton which meant a short train trip (easy) then locating the hertz office (not so easy) and getting the car from people who seemed to perform all transactions agonisingly slowly.
We decamped to the local mall while they sorted the baby seat (which S ended up installing). The mall was like being back in the Wagga marketplace. Don't you love a bald man with tatts on his head?
At long last we hopped in the car and were away. I was navigating, S was driving and Jack was sleeping. He didn't seem to like his seat much - it had things around his head. When the ground was bumpy his head rattled around like it was in a pinball machine.
All went well. We drove through 5386 roundabouts and got to Alveston near Stratford where we were booked into a gastropub (bless S and his foodloving cottonsocks!) called the Blue Boar, but we couldn't find the Blue Boar. No boars of any hue to speak of. Then we realised that it was in Alcester not Alveston. Looked on map (panicked and thought it was on other side of England but just on other side of Stratford). No worries. It had taken 2 hours to get to Stratford but took another hour to get over the other side. Stratford v. popular place to visit.
We made it to the Blue Boar a little frazzled, the navigator had done her nana, Jack was cranky and S was tired. We had a late lunch (delicious at last!) and tried to nap while Jack bounced off the walls and put things in drawers ( a new pastime).
We though the best strategy was to hit S upon A early (yes dinner was fab but more on that later!). We got there early and strolled around, admiring all the tudory ambience and enjoying the fine weather. The gardens at Shakespeare's birthplace were beautiful and the shop was most entertaining. Overcommercialised? No, I'm sure there's plenty of call for Will teapots, notepads, flickerbooks, post it notes, magnets and tshirts and gingerbread (Not sure what is going on with gingerbread here but besides being able to buy 'normal' gingerbread men you can also get ginger pigs/sheep/soccer players and of course gingerbread Will...tasty and cultural).
Anyway here are some photos.

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