the cotswolds

We booked a last-minute getaway to The Cotswolds this past weekend. And It is certainly a showpiece of England. I cannot believe the area is only two hours from London by car. Sometimes when you see the most magnificent things, don’t you feel like it should have been harder work to get there? Like the time Bryan lost oxygen, vomited and got food poisoning from his Peruvian sherpas on a hike to Machu Picchu. That’s what I’m talking about.

The Cotswolds is a region in southwest England, due west from London. Rolling limestone hills (‘wolds’ I think), pastoral countryside, 15th, 16th… every-century villages with houses all made from honey-colored stone- moneyed from the wool trade in medieval times, along winding roads, thatched roofs, windy rivers and streams, sheep, pubs, tea houses, horses, valleys, churches, castles and some euphoria thrown in for good measure since a million houses and buildings are covered with green and red-hued ivy and the sheer beauty of that makes me die a little from asphyxiation-by-joy.

The area is obviously famous for being so picturesque, and also outsiders see the villages and small cities as quintessentially English. It was ambitious for us to tour the region in two days, but someone’s gotta do it. Every time we took a turn into a new village, it was more breathtaking than the last. The awe I feel every time I see something new on this earth is my drug. Bryan is agreeing to fund my habit, god bless him.

I can’t name all the towns we drove and walked through but be assured they had names like Stow-on-the-Wold, Bourton-on-the-Water, Chipping Campden, Bishop’s Cleave and were surrounded by many places like Gloucestershirechippinghamshirenottingshirehamshireham. And some of the roads are so out of the way, they don’t have names. So the guidebook will actually print things like, “turn left at the Daneway Pub, then right at the old electrical plant” or my favorite “turn left at the post office” which should have read “turn left at the post office that actually doesn’t look like a post office but rather a small store with a red post box that you will see after you have driven past and then reversed several times and the American driving left-handed stick shift will be frustrated.”

Oh and I almost forgot- Bryan finally drove on the left side of the road! He did great. He only clipped one person’s sideview mirror.



Filed under bryan, photos, travel

12 responses to “the cotswolds

  1. I saw you comment on another blog and followed you over here đŸ™‚ Just wanted to say but most of all I think you’ve taken some lovely photos… I haven’t made the effort to get over to the Cotswolds in a few years and I’m not terribly far either… so you’ve inspired me!

  2. sonjey

    wow the pics are great! you are looking more and more the native Brits!

  3. triniis

    WOW! it looks like a fairytale. so gorgeous!!!

  4. Ed

    Now you’ve gone and made me jealous. I want that beer.

  5. arjenlutgendorff

    Good to read you had such a great time! Cheers!

  6. Rebecca

    ok, those directions remind me of the time we tried driving to Camp Louise and couldn’t read their directions or something and your mom made a joke about how their directions were basically like “turn left at the dead duck on the road.” Does anyone else remember that???

  7. Hello. I’ve found you through Not From Around Here, and I’m enjoying your blog. I’m another American expat here in Britain. I live in North Oxfordshire – not quite “Cotswoldy” but still very lovely (and fewer tourists!). I’ll be back to read more, and feel free to come see me at Lord Celery.


  8. yael

    Love the links to other expat blogs. One of them reminded me how dire the sandwich bag situation is in the U.K.

    Yes, the beer was delicious. Mmm.

    I do remember that about Camp Louise. My mom is so funny. In the ha ha way.

  9. pore80

    you could write about how your boobs looks ginormous in that grey sweater:) yeah hottie! is that so inappropriate????

  10. pore80

    it IS so inappropriate;)

  11. You know it’s just a huge trick don’t you? All built in the 1970s to shore up Britain’s flagging tourist industry, and to provide backdrops for movies.

  12. Pingback: cotswolds with more baby, less beer, equal fries « the part where we move to london

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