Monday, December 01, 2008

2008: Week 48

We ended our time in Paris with another meal at our local fave Le Volcan, then flew to Luton and caught a bus to Oxford where we spent a few days with Kerry and Anna. Since we've visited before we skipped the main attractions in town and ventured a little further afield to Blenhein Palace, a stately home belonging to the Dukes of Marlborough. It was mind-blowingly massive, with huge gardens and a lake - very interesting, although possibly not worth the massive entrance fee. Highlights were the gardens and family artworks; not so exciting was the modern-but-cheesy exhibition on the history of the house, complete with animated ghosts.

Our timing meant we missed a chance to participate in high table, but we did catch a Scotch tasting and visit several excellent restaurants. We also managed something of a cider tour of the local pubs - it turns out that there are a lot of good ones on offer along with the ubiquitous (and less tasty) Strongbow and Magners.

Best of the week
- A walk along the muddy banks of the Thames, then lunch at The Trout.
- A visit to Blenheim Palace, grand home and birthplace of Winston Churchill.
- A Scotch Whisky tasting at Nuffield College - very refined! And if you ever see a bottle of Ardbeg Uigeadail, I'd recommend you ignore the price and buy it.
- Spending time with friends, old and new.

Worst of the week
- The VERY long walk back from lunch at The Trout (although the problem had less to do with the distance than with the interval between bathrooms...).

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