Posted by: ilanasmith | April 7, 2008

English Easter

Last Easter, I travelled the Irish West Coast with Mark.  It was April and very Spring-y.  Blue skies and warmish.
This year, Easter fell earlier.  My office-mate Palle suggested that Denmark needs a new state religion that doesn’t have its holidays moving arbitrarily into Winter-dom, and I agree (and wouldn’t be too surprised if it happened – Denmark takes its holidays very seriously.  And its religion less so.)
So this Easter, I road-tripped once again.  Southern England, this time.  With Jen, this time.  And less warm, this time.
It rained.  It snowed.  It hailed.  It sleeted.  It windy’d.  It sunnied.  Nothing lasted for longer than about half an hour, so it stayed exciting.  Bruckheimer weather.
We travelled about a thousand miles, in a gigantic circle around London.  Cambridge to Warwick to Stratford to Oxford to Exeter to Penzance to St Ives to Winchester to Dover to Deal to Canterbury.
Notable events were:
  • Ridiculous prices, Disneyfication and boredom at what should be the impressive Warwick Castle.  Screw you, Madam Tussard people.
  • Almost getting blown off the top of the hill while inspecting the Uffington White Horse
  • Devonshire tea in Devon and Cornish pasties in Cornwall (Shut up, Yammy!  I do not always talk about food!  I also talk about weather.)
    St Ives (5) - Jen and her first pasty St Ives (6) - me and an excellent all-in-one miner's pasty
  • King Arthur stomping ground in Tintagel
  • Keeping a wary eye out for swashers and bucklers in Penzance
  • The Mont St-Michel-"inspired" St Michael’s Mount.  *cough*rip-off*cough*
  • Ditching Land’s End due to further Disneyfication
  • Getting trapped in the crowded winding streets of St Ives.  It turns out the answer is that there were many going to St Ives. 
  • Easter Vigil at Winchester Cathedral, seated next to Jane Austen’s grave.  Yep, went to the service.  Very haunting choir music in a pitch dark thousand year old cathedral.  We ditched after two hours (at only page 10 of 24) and went to find booze.  Ah, religion.
  • Dover’s White Cliffs, which we didn’t see very well, because we followed the signs and ended up on them instead.
  • Lunch with Rohan and Neil in Deal.  Hey, that rhymes.
  • Canterbury Cathedral in the twilight.
  • Leeds Castle.  I’d like to have a drink sometime with Lady Baillie.
  • Sandwiches.  The Poms are good at sandwiches. (Shut up!)

Cambridge (2) Canterbury Cathedral (3)



  1. Wow, I luv the perspective on the Canterbury Cathedral! Can I use it in a future blog (giving you artist credits of course)?

  2. Do you always talk about food?…:)

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