Dienstag, 11. November 2008

Stratford Day 4 Part 1 Or: "Twenty Pounds!" - "Third row, dear."

So here we go - I'm splitting entries. My notes on Hamlet are just so extensive, I will put those into an extra entry (that I still have to write *cough*), so here is the account of what we did during the day before we went to the theatre.

Day Four has a complete weather change. When we open the curtains in the morning, the sky is nice and clear and it looks like a calm and sunny day. After having taken the obligatory shower we go to room number 5 to knock, wait for El and Kristy and then go down to have breakfast. (BTW I've just started reading the third Harry Potter novel and they said something about fried tomatoes for breakfast and I was like "Hmmm, yummie!" and now I have a craving for fried tomatoes. Damn.) After breakfast we decide to walk to Mary Arden's Farm which is something like 4 miles away from Stratford ina viallge nearby called Wilmcote. Kristina has already been there the day before, but she doesn't mind going again. And she knows the way. Besides the weather is really lovely by now, the sun is shining and it is pretty warm. We walk through town, find our way to the canal (past Shakespeare's Birthplace where we admire that gogeous tree once more) and start walking alongside it. Rather close alongside it, as in "Slip and you can swim to Wilmcote"-close.

After about two miles we leave a rather noisy area (Stratford obviously has some industrial area along the canal) behind us and walk through the beautiful countryside around Stratford. We observe the masses of locks that must make travelling on the canal quite annoying actually. At every lock you have to get out of the boat, close one side and open another, and then go some twenty metres forward to the next lock. The things look interesting enough though. We also pass some former lockkeeper's houses, all with lovely gardens and in the middle of nowhere. I really like that kind of stuff. Kristina and I are walking ahead most of the time, as Hoppi and El stop a couple of times< lot to take photos. They catch up when we met an elderly man whom Kristina has already met the day before. He greets us and then points at me saying "Oxford, right?" We talk a bit about the weather and things, Hoppi and El catch up and we go on once more. We meet all those cute dogs to squee at as many people take their dog for a walk today. And we find food along the way. There are brambles, lots of them and sweet too! I pick and eat; Hoppi points out that you might not want to pick anything that's too low, seeing that a lot of people walk their dogs along the canal, and I remember this useless bit of knowledge that pandas can stand on their fore-paws to pee as high as possible when they mark their territory.

After about an hour we reach Wilmcote. Kristina and I are ahead again and standing on a bridge over the canal waiting for the others (delayed by taking pictures). We talk about something and start wondering whether we have lost El and Hoppi, when a car goes by. I only get a very brief look at the driver but think 'That guy looked like David Tennant.' Which is not weird at all considering why we've taken the trip and all, and I still have no idea whether my eyes gave in to wishful thinking, but then again why would I wish David Tennant would drive by in his car except maybe for giving us a ride back to Stratford, because our feet hurt pretty bad after the long walk, but then I'd have seen him too early and I think I'm drifting off slightly, sorry for that. Anyways, I tell Kristina that I think I saw David Tennant in that car and we decide to simply agree that it actually was David Tennant. No more wondering about which part of my body's causing hallucinations, my brain or my feet. :ugly:

The others finally arrive, delayed by a couple of geese they had to take pictures off, and we go to Mary Arden's Farm. The farm is very lovely, something where I'd want to drag my mom. They got a lot of information on farming one hundred until three hundred years ago, there's beautiful country gardens, there's sheep and pigs with brown fur, and cows and a proud and colourful cock. When El tries to take a close-up picture of him, one of the hens comes striding over, evidently very jealous and in fear El might take her husband away. We also squee at the bunch of Gewandungskinder, kids in Elizabethan clothing who are taking a tour of the whole farm and are dressed up in costumes. They all look so cute. We then sit at one of the tables in the garden where I eat half of El's chocolate-coated pecan nuts. I couldn't help it, El kept offering them and they were damn delicious. There are stones and small blocks of wood lying on the table; pieces to play nine men's morris with. The playing board is actually set into the field. I ask if anyone wants to play, but the others are not in the mood. (Lazy buggers. ;)) When I have children I'll build a board like that in my garden as well. Probably even if I don't have children. :ugly:

We go on further and have a look at all the birds. The farm has its own falconry and we intend to see the display later, but we have a good look at the falcons, hawks, kestrels and owls that sit on their perches. We all like the swaying owl extremely. As it sits behind its perch it suddenly starts swaying in this odd manner. Quite hypnotic actually if we hadn't had to laugh so much. *gg* We walk into a court then; from one of the houses comes a strange sort of yelping. We can't help it and look inside and there they are: the three cutest dogs ever! One of them immediatly jumps up the door and begs for our attention which we are only to willing to give. The dog is whining in this heartbraking manner, obviously missing its master or mistress and we try to comfort it as good as we can. One of the other dogs brings over a ball which El takes and bounces into the office (it's actually an office we look into - my god, we are so nosy, but those dogs were so cute!). The ball gets stuck on a bunch of stacked up chairs in one corner, onto which a jacket is thrown. Ooops. The dog starts circling the chairs and the jacket searching for its toy, and we stare awkwardly and wonder what happens if the dog decides to start tearing the jacket apart in search for the ball. *cough* Ooops. Whiny!Dog seems to sense our distraction and diverts especially my attention back to itself by setting its teeth into the sleeve of my cardigan. Actually I hardly notice at first, one moment I'm cuddling the cutie under the jaw, the next I can't get my hand back. I try to pull and it really doesn't work, because Whiny!Dog has now turned into Playful!Dog, tugging at my sleeve. I say "Aus! AUS!" in my most authorative voice and then realize that that's German which an English dog not necessarily understands. We wonder what the right command is in English and try out several
but nothing helps. I wonder briefly that the dog maybe hasn't been that far along in its training. After some minutes of tugging the dog finally looses its grip and lets go and I snatch my arm back. The sleeve is luckily just thoroughly wetted through with saliva, but that's nothing my own wouldn't have done. Nonetheless, we decide to retreat before the third dog decides to do something weird as well.

The falconry display is due to start anyway, so we go to the field and wait a bit. A lady with a bird on her hand arrives and introduces us to Audrey, explaining that Audrey is a kestrel. She talks about how the birds are used for hunting and that you can only use them when they are hungry because they will only do what you want if they really want the food you give them as a reward. Then we can give it a try and 'call' Audrey onto our arms. We let the children who are there try first, then we close in on the glove. When it's my turn I put on the glove, stretch out my arm and Audrey lands on my hand the next moment. I take a close look while she sits on my hand getting her reward, then she flies off. A really lovely animal. After we have all taken a turn, we stroll back to the entrance of the farm. Of course we visit the shop before we leave. I buy a small thing to weave threads with and some postcards.

When we leave the Farm we wonder briefly if we should take the tourist bus back to Stratford. Someone (probably Kristy) rushes out to ask for the ticket prices which we decide are to expensive just for the trip back to Stratford. We decide to go to the station instead. Of course we head off into the wrong direction at first. But this brings us to a small store which sells groceries, plants, and stamps too. I get those for my postcards. I also get a piece of bread pudding as I'm starting to get hungry. El manages to encounter and buy the most digusting food of the trip: turnip-flavoured crisps. Huuhhaa. The lady at the store also explains the way to the station to us, and we walk back, past Mary Arden's farm and up the street. As we arrive there we realize that the only train back to Stratford is the one that we took yesterday, the one that arrives at quarter past five. And we don't want to go through the preparations all in a hurry again. Apart from that that train is still hours away. So we decide to go back the way we came. The weather is so good that I take off my coat, turn my bag into a backpack and then we walk off again. An hour later we arrive at Stratford, and by this time I'm sure my feet are capable of giving me all kinds of hallucinations ranging from David Tennant in a car to a nice hot bubble-bath. (Uhh, I can hear El almost eliminating words in that sentence.) We walk around town in search for a nice pub to get something to eat. We end up at the Rose and Crown. After studying the menue for a while we go to the counter to order, and get in touch with more British humour. Kristy starts off by saying that we are at table number two, to which the landlord responds "Well, that's good for you." Then she orders J2O with water on top. He looks at her while preparing that and ask "Why not lemonade?" She answers "Because I'm not British." He ask where we are from and Kristy answers "Austria." (At this point I've given up to add "And Germany." :ugly:) He looks at the waiter who is also behind the counter and asks him "Austria. Isn't that near Wales?" So here we are. I have just switched nationalities three times in thirty seconds, from German to Austrian to Welsh. Oh well.

We finish ordering and go back to our table. After some minutes our food arrives and while I'm wolfing it down I realize once more how I just fade out the rest of the world while I'm eating. I'm so occupied with my food that I don't listen to anything anyone else says. It's almost like falling asleep and the voices around you melting into one big blob of sound. Sorry, girls. I was really hungry. I am also the first one to finish. I had a potato filled with chicken in salsa sauce (although hot or even spicy is different, but it was tasty though), Hoppi had Shepherd's Pie and I have no idea anymore what El and Kristy had. There you see how much I focus on my food when I'm hungry. :ugly: As we eat the waiter comes by and asks if everything was fine and if the food was any similar to Welsh food. *gg* After finishing we sit and relax. Hoppi and I finish writing our postcards and pass them around for El to sign as well, if they are going to people from the Forum. After a while we feel refreshed enough to make crazy jokes (I don't really remember what we laughed about but I remember that we were laughing about something). We leave and go to a DVD store, one of my wishes as I want at least one of the twenty DVD boxes that I can only get as expensive UK imports in Germany. It's just so hard to decide. There are all those lovely BBC films. And they have Doctor Who. Lots of Doctor Who. The price for Season Three is still a bit more than I can afford, but Season Two for 35 pounds is doable. I also find Blackpool for 10 pounds. I call El over to the shelf and show her one of those DVDs which she almost starts ripping from my hands when her eyes widen as she sees another DVD box in the shelf and her arm stretches out past me to grab one of those. For the whole rest of the day we are shocked though that the Casanova DVD is 20 pounds. El will exclaim "Twenty pounds!" and I will answer "Third row." Our seats for Hamlet are on third row, thus awfully close to the stage. And as we get closer and closer to our second night at the theatre we get more and more excited. So we pay for our DVDs and go back to the B&B to get changed without the hurry this time, and go to the theatre.

3 Kommentare:

amanda james hat gesagt…

yes!!!!you did it!!! good idea to split ;-)

hoppi hat gesagt…

El manages to encounter and buy the most digusting food of the trip: turnip-flavoured crisps.

Actually, they weren't just turnip-flavored crisps, but crisps made out of turnips. And they were awful. :nod:

An hour later we arrive at Stratford, and by this time I'm sure my feet are capable of giving me all kinds of hallucinations ranging from David Tennant in a car to a nice hot bubble-bath. (Uhh, I can hear El almost eliminating words in that sentence.)


Purslane hat gesagt…

Actually, they weren't just turnip-flavored crisps, but crisps made out of turnips. And they were awful. :nod:

Eeww, that's even more disgusting.