Tuesday, January 13, 2004

January 10

Today was Stratford-Upon-Avon. Somehow, after living in the little town (hamlet?) of Charlbury for just one short day made Stratford less exciting. Charlbury is a town of amazing little "cottages" which are mostly apartments or flats, or townhouses. But, townhouses that were built in the 1700's. It looks like a set from "The Secret Garden" or a Jane Austen movie... Anyhow. Stratford. First stop was, of course, the theatre. We got to walk on the apron stage of the Swan theatre-- the theatre in which Judie Dench would be standing on just five hours after us! It was smaller than I thought it would be-- the Swan theatre in Stratford On has quite a bit more seating in it than this one. We walked through backstage to the Royal theatre, and it really is quite amazing: these two theatres share one back stage! So, when there is a play on in each, there are over 50 people in an incredibly small space at an average point in the play. We walked across the stage of the Royal, and apparently professional stages have a grade (grate?) -a slant so that the stage can be fully seen by those in the back or in the balcony. Interesting... I'm quite glad that I didn't have to work on a slanted stage when I did plays in highschool!
For lunch, the set us loose on the town for an hour and a half, and Tina and I chose "Anne Hathaway's Tea House," from which we bought sandwiches (Tina went adventurous- a pickle and cheese sandwich!) for quite a cheap price, and sat in a park (a close?) to enjoy them. We saw everything from a dad telling his 2 year old daughter to "go splash in the puddles with your Wellies!" to a middle aged man honking at the geese in the park. We visited a bookstore-- Hannah-- they had a video of David Beckham for only 1pound and I was going to get that for you, but I was told that videos from the UK don't work in Canada. Sorry!
Next stop -- Mary Auden's farm. The most interesting part of this tour was not the Tudor house, but the etimology. I learned so many things about words from the tour guide it was exciting!
-- In that era, what they ate off of was called a "board." the board had a worse side (for eating off of) and a good side (for the rest of the day), and was flipped according to what it was needed for. After dinner, flip the table over and gather around for a meeting== thus began the "board meetings"

All in all, famously good day. Wrapped up with an announcement that we should have access to the internet by Sunday or Monday, which is definitely good news. Till then!

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