Stonehenge: random rocks on a hillside, huge tourist attraction, and one of the highlights of my trip. I’ll leave you to decide whether this half destroyed landmark appealed to me as a result of early exposure to informative History Channel specials with no message apart from, “ALIENS ALIENS ALIENS!!!” or whether I had a more refined interest in the nomadic tribes which likely used the site for religious purposes.* Thankfully, it had snowed a few days before our trip and not all the snow had melted. This helped provide a nice frame to the countless** pictures I took while I lived out one of my childhood dreams.
Getting to Stonehenge is as simple as finding the parking lot and walking through a short tunnel. Anyone who can accomplish this is allowed to walk around the nicely roped perimeter, and there’s no limit to the amount*** of pictures anyone can take of these famous mossy slabs of rock. No one is allowed to touch the Stonehenge stones (probably for fear of cross contamination between alien and human DNA), but tourists can get pretty close.
It took reaching the gift shop for me to realize just how much Stonehenge meant to me. Ten postcards, two chocolate bars, two bookmarks, one coffee mug, one blanket, one shot glass, one paper weight, one magnet, and £90 later I boarded the C-89 tour bus and prepared myself for an hour nap on the way to Windsor Castle. That wasn’t really a big deal though. I mean, what do you think is cooler: rocks or an enormous doll-house complete with working plumbing and electricity?
*Here’s a hint: aside from the slightly disappointing lack of extra-terrestrial life forms, the trip was everything I expected.
**Actually, there were just twenty-five.
***Twenty-five is a good number. Just saying.