Anyway, yesterday, we had the fun of an out of London tour. We checked with the hotel concierce and they set us up with Evanevans.co.uk/ as our tour guide. The tour is an early anniversary gift from our kids. It was appreciated very much because there is no way we would have done this on our own. It will always be remembered as the highlight of our time in the United Kingdom. Thanks Marie, Karla, Chris, Kim, Tony, Klint, Calli and Kris!
After catching a cool taxi ride to our pick-up point we stopped by a great smelling fast food place (smelled like roasting turkey) and waited for the tour bus. It was called Pret. (oh! a website!) What great food! Sandwiches and breakfast breads were what I noticed but they also have salads and dessert style goodies too. The sandwiches are great for picking up and taking to work. I wished that we had picked out a lunch to bring with us on the tour. If Pret does not sell all their sandwiches at the end of the day, they give it all to charity. No day old sandwiches, no sell by or use by dates on the items since they are made on fresh bread, fresh each morning. I was impressed. They have a little booklet in their store that gives pointers on eating good and healthy including some really good quotes! So I stuck one into my pocket and am sharing information from that.
I wondered if they were in America, but their booklet says:
"Pret does not want to franchise, so please don't call us and ask for a franchise because we don't. We really don't. We don't like to franchise so we don't."Not sure if they franchise or not, I see a website....with, usa site... contact us, hmmm.
They also have this:
"We're always looking for new, homemade, delicious, natural ingredients. Do you have a friend or neighbour who makes something that you think would be great at Pret? Anything from jam to sausages? Please let us know or get them to cal us."
One of the quotes in their booklet:
"The idols of today are unmistakeable--- self-esteem without effort, fame without achievement, sex without consequences, wealth without responsibility, pleasure without struggle and experience without commitment." Rabbi Dr. Jonathan Sacks
Pret is great! It has ideas that are really working towards fast, fresh, healthy lunches. Good stuff!
Our first stop was Windsor Castle, the home of the Queen (who was away visiting in Scotland). It looks like a fairy-tale castle to me. But then I have this idea in my head from childhood stories and movies. It has sparked a desire to read about England's history, especially the leaders in England's history.
Off to the Georgian Baths. These were built by the Romans during the time they ruled England. (Sorry, not good on remembering dates.) We saw lots of decaying stones and the baths were green with algae.
The Roman's worshipped and sacrificed to a goddess here too. I wondered about the sacrifices. I wondered about the slaughter stones I saw people laying their hands on. I got the creeps thinking about them being slaughter stones. I remembered reading about the Roman's sacrificing unwanted babies to their gods. Something weird, I thought I could even hear babies sceaming and asked my husband if he could hear that. He had not heard anything until I pointed it out then he said, "Weird." I know ---it's my wild imagination. I didn't really care for this part of the tour.
The baths made you wonder what sort of things went on in them. They claimed some came here in ancient times for the "healing waters." I looked at the water and thought, I probably get sick if I touched it.
Anyway, they have built new baths now and one can arrange to spend nights there and use the baths that are pools filled with hot water from under the ground. We have hot mineral springs in Alaska that I have had the pleasure of soaking in before. The Roman's health actually faded using these old baths since their pools were filled with hot water coming in through lead pipes which we saw!
One hour beyond the baths was Stonehenge. On the way there our guide pointed out the gigantic chalk drawing of a horse in the distant hills. That is impressive and also makes you wonder who did and how did they do the drawings. I tried to get a picture but the bus was not stopping along the way and I got a picture of a blurry tree. One of many blurry trees since this trip began.
Stonehenge is a wonder. All that is related to this site makes one wonder. I wonder what, I wonder who and I wonder how. The rocks are called blue rocks. They look grey now but they say if you were to scrape the rock it would be blue. We could not get up close to the stones but only look from a distance. There are lots of birds there.
Could all these things be what is left of the peoples that were the result of the sons of God having babies with the beautiful daughters of men? This was briefly mentioned in the Old Testament in Genesis before the Great Flood. That makes more sense to me than people taming wooly mammoths to drag these stones 240 miles from Wales to this site. That's a long way for so many stones for little people. (I was amazed at the little suits or armor we saw at the Windsor Castle.)
"When men began to increase in number on the earth and the daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw that the daughters of men were beautiful, and they married any of them they chose. Then the LORD said, "My Spirit will not contend with man forever, for he is mortal; his days will be a hundred and twenty years." The Nephilim were on the earth in those days---and also afterward--when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown." Genesis 6:2-4
In my own little opinion, I don't think that little people could make all this stuff, but "men of renown" could.
We have not been to the Tower of London yet where Queen's heads did roll. I have seen London Bridge from a distance and we plan to make a trip of seeing the Tower and the Bridge before we leave here.
Tourism in England is alive and well everyone! There are so many people everywhere we go! A shuttle driver told us that London has 9+ million people living here but he felt that this number would dwindle since everything is so costly for living here.