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Today definitely started off rocky. Patricia didn’t have her Highclere tickets printed, so we had to rush to the library and get that done, which we did. That was easy! We then headed to the train station, Paddington. Our tickets to Newbury had a connection in them, so we were supposed to get off in Reading and get on the next train to Newbury. We did that too. So far, so good. Well, once you get to Newbury, there are two stations. The first is Newbury Racecourse. We didn’t know if there was also a Newbury Station, so we got off at the Racecourse. There wasn’t a single taxi in sight. At that point, we knew we’d gotten off at the wrong station. We just walked the direction of the train. We saw a Sainsbury’s, so we were going to go in and ask them to call a taxi when I saw a sign that pointed to the station. I later found out that we walked about a mile and a half.

Such a relief seeing this!

That first silver car ended up being our taxi to Highclere. He was pretty nice. He told us about the things we were passing and about the weather.

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s land meets up with Highclere’s

It was about a ten minute drive to the castle, so we had a chance to rest our feet. He gave us his card so we could call him when we were finished at the castle.

We’re there!!


I liked this one because I got Patricia taking a selfie in the back.


It’s gorgeous! It doesn’t even look real!




We weren’t allowed to take pictures in the castle, but I did sneak a few that I’m not going to post. It was so lovely inside. I kept my eyes out for modern things, though. I saw a hair dryer, some flashlights, some radios and modern magazines. It made me laugh because I feel like that stuff doesn’t belong there.

We finished in the castle and decided to go to the tearoom for lunch before exploring the gardens. I got chicken in tomato sauce and veggies. I also got a little cake.


You can’t see it because of the melty chocolate, but it’s gluten free!

I saw this when I was ordering and decided to get it, knowing it would probably be full of chemicals and rice/potato flour, but hey, it’s gluten free, so I decided why not! I got it, read the label, and it wasn’t bad! I was incredibly surprised to see that is used almond flour! It’s almost paleo!!

It was really good! It was dark chocolate, hazelnut and cranberry. It wasn’t something I would normally have tried, but I’m glad I got it.

After lunch, we walked through the gardens for a while. They were massive! I don’t think we saw even half of it.

The wildflower garden


The castle from the garden


The secret garden


Our final view of the castle before we headed back to London


The tree!
Our taxi driver told us that the ten til trains are all direct, so we called him and headed back to the station to catch a direct train. We got on and our first coach had a broken AC. We moved, napped for a half hour in a cooler coach and then stopped. The train stopped y’all. For an hour, it was stopped less than a mile outside of Paddington in London. The air stopped completely and the breaks couldn’t go without air. The train couldn’t go forward or backward. Everyone was frustrated and tired and hot.
We finally made it back to London though and headed straight for Piccadilly Circus. We were going to try to get Book of Mormon lottery tickets. We entered, as did 100 other people, and then headed to the M&M museum to look around.
It was huge! But I couldn’t find any dark chocolate M&M’s 😦
We finished at M&M world and went to Costa Coffee for some coolers (fruity drinks instead of coffee drinks) then headed back to the theatre to see if we won. We didn’t. It was upsetting, but we sucked it up and headed to a 1/2 price booth. Apparently Book of Mormon is sold out until the end of the month. Matilda was also sold out tonight and Top Hat was expensive. Instead, we decided to get dinner and head back to pack for this weekends excursion.