Day 49 – Tuesday, June 12th

Bath Abbey

The main pool of the Bath

The Avon River

The big pile of rocks!!

We began this morning by saying goodbye to Roy and Diane as they boarded their bus to the airport. Then, Michael and I caught a train to the city of Bath.

The city is most famous for the ancient Roman communal baths, dating to the later first century.. These were discovered inadvertently when there was a water leak under a house. There were areas that were used for communal bathing, saunas, and changing rooms. It was also used as a religious site. We could imagine the Romans sitting in these warm pools and discussing the days events or conducting some business.

The baths are fed by an underground hot spring, apparently the only one in Britain. It was most amazing to see the plumbing system (including a lead pipe) that were used to channel the water into the pools, and then send the excess water into the Avon River. Such technology at such an early time period in history!!!

The baths were originally covered with a domed roof, but now are open to the elements. The water is a murky green due to the algae that has grown under the sun. In Roman times, the water would have been crystal clear.

We also visited Bath Abbey which was a huge, beautiful church. However, after seeing SO many churches, we didn’t tarry long!!!

As we were preparing to leave Bath, we realized that it was only 1:00pm so we checked the train schedules and decided to head about an hour down the tracks to visit the town of Salisbury and the site of Stonehenge. The bus ride out to the site took about 20 minutes and drove through miles of farm land and paddocks. Our first view of the great rocks was disappointing, as we could also see hundreds of sightseers!!!! However, once we had purchased our tickets and walked across the road into the pasture surrounding it, we were not as aware of the numbers of people. Instead, we were awed by the beauty and magnificence of the structure itself.

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