Day 3: In the Wilds of England
Day at a Glance:
We started our today's adventure at 6:45am and hopped on a bus headed for Avebury. Once we arrived everyone was both excited and surprised to see sheep roaming around. Walking around Avebury was both peaceful and exciting this may have been due to all of the hill running, rock hugging, and poo dodging. Next we took our bus to Stonehenge. Before seeing the stones we received these really neat audio tours then made our way via shuttle to the stones. Once there it's hard to believe that you're really there and with taking pictures and trying to focus on the audio tour it can be easy to be distracted or not fully appreciate one of the wonders of the ancient world. Thankfully, YEAH Professors are good at bringing you back and making sure you take in the amazing things you're seeing "with your very own eyeballs" (Prof. Janie) our next stop was Salisbury. We saw the Salisbury Cathedral, which was gorgeous and much bigger than I had expected. As we looked around inside the sanctuary what I found fascinating was a Baptismal Fount that was designed in such a way that although the water was running from from 4 different faucets the pool itself was perfectly still. After the cathedral our small groups were allowed to walk around the town of Salisbury which had all kinds of different shops to go to and buildings to see, along with a farmers market where my group bought some berries. These Berries were so good and exactly what we needed in that moment. Overall a very successful day!
We started off the day with an hour and a half drive to Avebury. It's a little spot of civilization in the very pretty English country side. Avebury had a lot of sheep, so of course we had to pet them! Also in Avebury is a stone circle. Similar to Stonehenge it has standing stones. But in Avebury the stones are much smaller and roughly shaped. The stones and sheep made for excellent photography. But the funny thing was the sheep were pinned in with the stones, which meant there was a lot of poop on the ground. That didn't stop us from going up to touch the stones. Vinny even found 5 pence in a hole in one of the rocks. We only stayed about an hour and then we moved on to the real Stonehenge.
Sheep & Stones at Avebury
|Avebury Town and Stone Circle|
I had a great experience witnessing the amazing site of Stonehenge. From our first arrival we were able to witness the clean and beautiful landscape that surrounded this site. Once we got closer to the stones, however, we were able to see the true beauty of these stones. We witnessed the outstanding and unique color, shape, and design of these ancient stones. We were also able to get the actual size of these stone, which was bigger then I expected. On top of all of this, we were able to learn the history behind these stones through the audio recording. This information was very interesting and taught me a significant amount about this site. Overall, I very much enjoyed visiting this unique location due to its beauty as well as the knowledge I received.
After Stonehenge, we took the bus to Salisbury. On our way to the cathedral, we stepped into St. Thomas Beckett Church. I was excited to find the medieval "Doom Painting" mural that I had researched, and I also discovered burial stones dating to the 1600s and 1700s. Next, we viewed the Salisbury Cathedral, and everyone was surprised by its massive size. The cathedral has the tallest spire in England at 404 ft. The cathedral was built in a short period of time, only 38 years, so it has a unified Gothic style. Inside, we admired soaring vaults, the oldest working clock in Europe, and an original copy of the Magna Carta. I especially enjoyed the stonework on the cloisters which had cloverleaf patterns balanced on delicate pillars. My group also accidentally wandered up a spiral staircase to the library where we viewed rare illuminated manuscripts. After the church, the groups had time to explore the town of Salisbury. Some people purchased chocolates, and our group bought fresh raspberries and blueberries from a market stand. They tasted sweet, juicy, and delicious!
|St. Thomas Beckett Church "Doom Painting"|
|Viewing the Magna Carta|
|Learning about the Manuscripts in the Salisbury Library|