Journey Of A Lifetime: Part 1
Wow, what a journey it's been! I am beyond words as to the beauty and history that this country holds in it. I have always been fascinated by England from the ancient history that it holds, to its lush green countryside. I am certainly no city girl and I'm certainly not a country girl but I am right there in the middle, which works well for me since there are many towns that have the perfect amount of rustic and city living charm to it. Devizes is just one of many. I've been to Avebury, Stonehenge, the Caenhill locks, Bristol, Bath and London all with their own beauty and sense of awe and wonder. The farm in its own way creates its own sense of beauty through the hard work done with the students and animals, as well as the amazing amount of admin work behind the scenes.
I would like to begin with the Caenhill Locks as it's literally just across the way from the farm and literally just a stone's throw from where I stayed for 10 days. The towpath up the locks is, naturally, steep as you're bringing a canal up 400 feet above sea level. It's a bit of a trek, but worth it once you reach level ground and even easier coming back down the locks. I imagine the path is even more beautiful in summer as I was actually passing flowers that were still in bloom, even with some of the frosty nights we were getting. There are certain parts of the path that connect to a path next to the A361, the main road through town, the first shop you come up to is the infamous SPAR shop where our mischievous donkey friends somehow wandered down to, without apparently getting much notice. We are currently leveled out as we have reached the top of the locks and it's only about a 20 minute walk from the farm. If you continue on the towpath you pass by endless narrowboats and fellow walkers, if your destination is Devizes city centre then you would come up to street level on Northgate street take a right and you'll begin to see pubs and hotels that you may recognize from videos and pictures posted by Chris and Caroline. At only a 40 minute walk from the farm you'll find The Shambles Market where Caroline is on many weekends as well as many other shops. I was somewhat disappointed to find out though that many shops are only open for a few hours a day or even close early, so be sure to get out and about early in the day.
I am sad to admit that I didn't actually go out for a meal as much as I probably should have, but I was also staying at a self-catered bed and breakfast for the first 10 days of my trip. The Bed and Breakfast is called the Canal Barn and I stayed in The Hayloft, it's a very homely cottage for a reasonable price. I had some issues with the heating, but I was never around much during the day for it to matter and the blanket on the bed was so warm that it didn't matter overnight. Once I came to the end of my stay at The Canal Barn, I walked the 3 miles to the other side of Devizes and stayed in the Travelodge, while there I mainly ate at the Subway next door. I had already moved my suitcase the night before, so walking wasn't too difficult. I wouldn't recommend Subway for meals two days in a row, but there weren't many choices within walking distance. I did however befriend one of the women who works at that store and she actually gave me a recommendation to visit Dartmoor on my next visit as she is friends with someone who owns a camper van holiday park. The meal I would actually recommend comes from The Red Lion in Avebury where I had my birthday dinner. I would suggest going to Stonehenge in the morning and then drive to Avebury and walk among the stones before having dinner at The Red Lion. It would be a great way to end a magical day and the food is great! The worst drink I had was on a day trip with Dave to Lacock. It wasn't really that bad though, It was more a surprise because it wasn't what I thought it was. I bought a water which I didn't realize was a sparkling water, took a drink and immediately spit it out in shock. The lesson here is to always look at the label, especially in Europe where you have to be specific if you want sparkling or still water.
Look out for part 2 next week!