Stratford-upon-Avon, England

Once daylight warmed our hotel room, we had tea and breakfast then explored Shakespeare’s hometown.
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Can I make a side note here that I could completely live in England?  I’m a massive tea fan and the fact that everywhere you go — restaurant, house, hotel room, you name it — people assume you want tea and ask how you would like it.  That’s nothing short of divine.  I have had tea black my entire life and until I went here, I didn’t know there options: Milk?  How much milk?  Sugar?  How many sugar cubes?  Spoiled was how I felt every time someone English asked me about my tea preference.

Leaving our hotel, we were off to explore the medieval town of Stratford!  As an avid writer and reader, this spot was one I could not wait to visit because it is the birthplace of William Shakespeare.  Nestled on this gorgeous river, the area is beautiful and peaceful.img_0009img_0010One aspect I loved most were the beautiful barges floating on the canal.  They made me feel jealous of those who lived inside, those that had the ability to sail wherever and call the next spot “home” . . .
img_0011img_0008Once we passed, we followed the sidewalk and slipped under the last berries of autumn into the heart of Stratford.
img_0014To say the town was gorgeous is an understatement.  It was beautiful and filled to the brim with picturesque English stores and restaurants.  Not only that, but all places we went had begun decorating for Christmas.  The British, I was soon to discover, are crazy passionate about Christmas.  More than Americans, which I didn’t think was possible.
IMG_0016.JPGimg_0017img_0018We only had a little bit of time to be in Stratford before we had to move on but before we left, the place I was waiting most for: Shakespeare’s home.  The building itself was larger than I had imagined and located in the heart of the town, which was odd to me as I wanted there to be some type of separation from the history and modern.img_0022What was also strange was seeing people walk by his home without even glancing at it.  I asked Andy if the English were at all fascinated with Shakespeare as much as Americans.  Analyzing the people that continued to stroll by without pausing, his rationale was that Shakespeare may be overlooked because it is on the English’s doorstep.  While this makes sense, it was also baffling so there I stood, seemingly the only person interested in the most famous playwright . . .

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