Caroline writes about her visit to Bath and Stonehenge, two historical places in England. She talks about the parts of each visit that stood out to her on the day trip and the importance of embracing and being grateful for all the little moments.
I try and take away at least one thing from every podcast I listen to, and today, I’ve been dwelling on an idea from Raquelle Stevens, co-author of the recently released book The Sunshine Mind. She challenged the audience to focus on being grateful for things as they are in the moment instead of romanticizing or questioning the future. That is definitely something I have been trying to focus on more frequently, and I truly believe that some of my experiences abroad so far have helped me work towards that—one being our CEA CAPA-led day trip to Bath and Stonehenge.
After allowing us time to settle in, CEA CAPA hosted a day trip to two historical places in England: Bath and Stonehenge. My roommate and I contemplated whether we were going to take them up on the opportunity after many snoozed alarms, but we just barely secured the last two seats on the coach bus, and I am so glad we did.
We began our trip in the city of Bath which is nearly a three-hour bus ride from central London. Because we had to get up and moving by six in the morning, I slept the majority of the ride there, but for the short time I was awake, I took the opportunity to meet other students in the program, specifically those from other universities. CEA CAPA hosts students at numerous housing locations scattered throughout central London, so these types of events are a great way to make new friends you may otherwise not know existed.
Bath was the cutest little city ever—quaint, picturesque, and overall just gorgeous. The baths were originally constructed for social uses, and the Roman Bath is supposedly “one of the best-preserved Roman remains in the world.” The bath pictured below is located among a more in-depth museum that houses additional historic Roman remains. With an audio guide device (think early 2000s Motorola phone), we had the opportunity to insert ourselves into Roman history.
Although it is known for its historical Roman-built baths, I found the city’s charm to come from the spirit of the community. Every person we met was extremely welcoming and friendly. There were family-owned street food vendors (with some of the best wraps and sauces I have ever had) and the locals were very cordial—even when my roommate locked herself in the McDonald’s bathroom by accident. The community spirit was radiant, and it set the tone for the rest of the day.
Stonehenge has a reputation for being underwhelming because the sight to see is literally just ginormous stones, but make no mistake, it is more than just rocks. Though they were technically just stones, the sight left us in awe; the stones were alluring. They’re set up in such an interesting way considering the legend that humans moved the stones to Salisbury from different parts of Britain. Sometimes I still randomly wonder about how they got them there.
Anyways, we spent nearly a half hour admiring the sight (and the numerous sheep nearby), snapped some pictures, and then frolicked in the many acres of greenery surrounding it. We honestly just aimlessly walked around, but it was one of the most fun days ever. It felt like a countryside fever dream. A core memory for sure.
From the community and kindness of Bath to the serenity of Stonehenge, this day trip taught me the importance of the simple things in life. It taught me the importance of being grateful for things in the present moment. Life is what you make of it, and this shift in mindset makes a world of a difference.
Caroline Briscoe is an official blogger for spring 2023, sharing her story in frequent posts on our blog. A Strategic Communications major at University of Missouri, she is studying and interning abroad in London this semester. All views expressed are her own and may or may not reflect the experiences of other students.
Caroline's journey continues all semester so stay tuned.