Tuesday, December 22, 2015

A Bit of Bristol and Bath

Hey everyone,

So over the past three days I found myself in Bristol with my flatmate Rob and the rest of the Waggett family at their home in Bristol. I got the chance to head to Bristol before I headed to London for the holiday's which as great, and Rob and his family opened their doors to let me stay with them for the past few days and I have to say it was a great time.

On the 19th Steve, Rob's Dad, came and got me and Rob from Plymouth and drove us back to Bristol with him. Steven and Rob chatted on the drive to Bristol, and I almost fell asleep in the back, but when I wasn't falling asleep I got the chance to find out some more about Rob's family. It took a bit but we finally made the trip from Plymouth to Bristol, which was one of the first trips outside of Plymouth for me since I arrived. Rob and his family live in a part of Bristol that I have never heard of, but got a chance to learn a lot about during that day, which is Westbury-on-Trym just outside of the city center.

Shortly after I arrived at Rob's home, I was greeted by Rob's mother Clare and all four of us sat down to a quick lunch and then we headed headed into the city where I got a chance to see a local Christmas fair. After Rob's girlfriend Georgia meet up with us we went on a tour of the village. In the picture above that is the local church of Rob's village, which was one of the many things that Rob showed me along our tour of Westbury. After our tour we relaxed for a bit and then just before dinner we headed to get Rob's younger brother Doug from work and made plans to get a drink after dinner. Doug had just turned 18 which was the legal drinking age here in the UK, and Rob had yet to get a drink with his brother, so the three of us headed down to the Black Swan, or the Dirty Duck as many call it, for a drink.

  After drinks we called it a night and got ready for the next day. When we arose we had a quick breakfast and planned out the day in Bristol. Rob, Doug and Georgia where my tour guides to their beautiful city, and anything they forgot to tell me about their youngest brother George was sure to fill me in on when we got home. We first stopped to see the suspension bridge which crossed the River Avon. Rob explained the history of the bridge but I was caught up in the beauty of where the bridge was and how the sun was shining on it.

After seeing the bridge Rob showed me the local rock slide that had formed because of many years of people sliding on the rock. It is something that I might have missed, if I went on a tour of the city alone, and it's a great local secret. We then went to see the ground of Bristol City FC, which they played Queen's Park Rangers the day before I arrived. But it was amazing to see such a massive stadium devoted to the sport I love. Then we made our way over to the city harbor, and walked along the docks to the city center. Along the way we saw, along with getting soaked from rain, the SS Great Britain, Aardman Animations who make Wallace and Gromit, and the Mshed which is a local museum. When touring the Mshed I got to see a piece of art that I have wanted to see for over 5 years, a piece by Banksy called "The Grim Reaper", which was painted on a local boat in the harbor, and the owners of the boat cut out the piece and have been displaying it since. It was amazing to see that piece in person for the first time, which inspired all of my art, so to see his work in person was amazing.

 We then went back outside into the weather and braved the rain to see the hippodrome theater, the aquarium, and @Bristol. And as we went back to the car we searched for one of Banksy's new Bristol pieces "The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum", and low and behold we found it right next to where we parked. Again I found myself going back to High School and looking a Banksy pieces in wonder, and to see once in the streets in person, I wouldn't trade it for the world.

We then went home to a roast lunch that Mr. Waggett had made, which was wonderful then relaxing for most of the night. The following day we took another journey to Bath. I will be writing a post all about Bath later, but with the tour guides like the Waggett's I have to let you all know what they showed me.

It was a short drive from Bristol to Bath, and once we parked the car, it took Mrs.Waggett two seconds to show me the first thing that Bath had to offer. The Royal Crescent. It is a beautiful piece of architecture that could not go unnoticed in the city. Shortly After that we went to our next stop The Green Bird Cafe, which was one of Mrs. Waggett's favorites in the city. The coffee and cake were amazing and I will be going back soon.


We then made our way down the streets of Bath. It was amazing the amount of shops mixed with the architecture of the city. There were specialty shops everywhere you looked mixed in with the brand name titans. It felt like the Kittery Outlets, ME and Downtown Portsmouth, NH mixed. Again it was great to have the Waggetts as my guide because if I was to go there on my own I would have been lost. They made sure they showed where the Roman Bath's were and the cathedral was so I can show Haley when she arrives in about a week. From there I saw the River Avon which runs through Bath and next to the Bath Rugby Club. Everything was just amazing in Bath.

After the four of us made it back to Westbury, we all had plans for the night. Rob and his mother had to go shoe shopping, Doug went with them. George was defending the Kingdoms he forged in his games, and Rob's father was making dinner. For me this gave me a chance to meet up with a teammate from my Enactus society back at Plymouth, Anthony. We went to the Black Swan and had a drink, and talked Enactus, plans for the holidays amongst other things. Shortly after we parted ways I made it back to the house in time for dinner. After experiencing my first meat pie, which was amazing I might add, I experienced something that I hadn't experienced since I left home. The Waggetts had gotten me Christmas presents. It was something that I didn't see coming at all since they had hosted me for only the past several days, but I was so happy for the fact they had thought of me during the holiday season, but they had already given me a gift for the holiday season that I didn't expect. They made me feel at home, and almost apart of the family, and that was something I was missing this holiday season, and I can't thank them enough for that. But after I got on the train today headed for my next stop I got a chance to think about what they did for me and I can't thank them enough. So Rob, and the rest of the Waggetts thank you so much for your hospitality and for all you did over the past few days, it really was amazing. I hope you had as much fun as I did.


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