We started our day bright and early (and still jet-lagged) with a drive out to the town of Cheddar. The radio, which has been refusing to play much in the way of music, decided to send us into the day with Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” Combined with the overcast weather it made it feel like we were back in the Pacific Northwest.
The Cheddar Gorge was as lovely as I remembered it from my last trip to the UK, but I confess the town was a lot (sorry, no other way to say it) cheesier than I recalled. In one shop you could buy a number of hideous fairy statues, Hannah Montana posters, and T-shirts with Bigfoot, that one with three wolves howling at the moon, and, inexplicably, one with an American Eagle with stars and stripes behind it. But we bought ourselves some cheddar at the Cheddar Gorge Cheese Co. and that made up for the silly shops.
After Cheddar we drove to Wells to see the cathedral. We arrived just as a school orchestra was beginning a concert. They started off with that song “Also sprach Zarathustra” from 2001: A Space Odyssey and continued on with a whole series of very dramatic pieces, including Gustav Holst’s “Mars: Bringer of War” (Stacey, this made me laugh because I kept thinking of the scene in Sherlock episode three with the fight at the planetarium.) Later Larry and I were sorry we hadn’t thought to have some sort of epic battle in the cathedral, possibly one that would have ended with me chasing Larry up the aisle of the concert audience and then tackling him into the woodwinds section. Ah well, missed opportunities…
After Wells we raced off to Longleat House to see if we could get into the hedge maze before it closed for the day. The woman at the booth said we had exactly 30 minutes to do the maze (they advise you leave two hours). In the end, we got to the center in about 5 or 10 minutes–no joke. We literally just stood there for a minute in shock. Bit of a letdown really. Oh well, this is what happens when you put two super-mega-geniuses like us in the world’s longest hedge maze. We crush it with our massive intellect.
After the maze we drove back to Mere, trying to avoid hitting any of the 10,000 pheasants that kept appearing in the road. Then we had a quick nap at the B&B and, deciding we were too full still to eat dinner, we ate some cheddar with crackers and apples for dinner while watching QI on the Dave channel. (Jen! QI! Dave! Why aren’t you here???)