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The end of term calls for a celebration. That’s why Christina and I decided to head to Bath to have a wander round the Christmas market before the stalls closed for the year Sunday night. This year we’ve basically done everything that would help us spread Christmas joy, but I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that Christmas Eve is only 6 days away. We felt a bit bad for excluding Fraser from our little pre-xmas shopping session last weekend, so we decided to take him along to Bath. In exchange for being so thoughtful he was kind enough to give us a lift.
During the drive, my face was practically glued to the window the entire drive as I was mesmerized by the the beautiful landscape. I kept saying that the rolling hills and endless acres of fields with grazing sheep sort of reminded me of home. But I guess, I just haven’t seen enough of the country to see that actual similarities exist.
As a semi-permanent UK resident I always think that I’d still get plenty of opportunities to travel around the country. But so far I’ve only been to a handful of places which is somewhat sad considering that I’ve lived here more than 3 years.
Our first stop was the University, Christina and Fraser’s alma mater. I had only been to the campus once before, six years ago, so I was excited to see it again. Christina had planned to give me the grand tour but when we walked around campus she hardly knew her way around as so much had changed. Fraser did a good job of taking over the tourist guide position.
Seeing as it was the first day of winter break, the campus was rather deserted. But I imagine it looks extremely beautiful in the summer with students sprawled out across the lawn.
You can’t tell from the pictures, but it was extremely windy and icy. Before being blown away by the wind we felt it was a good idea to continue the tour down in town. Fraser dropped us off in the center and while he parked the car, Christina and I did what girls do best: go shopping.
That was only until we discovered the food stalls. It was way past my usual lunch time so I was immediately drawn to the German Sausage stall. But we quickly found something even more appealing.
When we saw the Schokoküsse stall which was being marketed as Bavarian, I was immediately sold. I don’t think that Schokoküsse are typically Bavarian, but they are still quite the delicate and delicious little treat. A thin wafer covered with stiffly beaten egg whites, covered in chocolate. What’s not to like about that?
We opted to share the milk chocolate and coconut kiss.
We then wandered round town for a bit until Fraser joined us.
Then it was finally time to head to the Christmas market. It was the final weekend of the market so we expected it to be rather busy. But apart from that, I was extremely impressed by the what the stalls had to offer and how big it was. It reminded me a lot of the markets we have back home where you can buy all sort of things that you wouldn’t necessarily know how to put to good use, but you still feel the urge to buy.
The best example, the stall where they sold dog treats. We basically bee-lined towards this stall and bought a little Christmas present for Sunny. We asked the sales person which treat she could recommend and she insisted that most dogs typically enjoy the gluten free paws. We weren’t so sure about how Sunny would take the whole gluten free thing, so we opted for an edible Christmas card instead.
Only in the UK would this be a legitimate Christmas market stall.
And then I finally got to eat lunch. We went with German Bratwurst hotdogs. The artistically squiggled on ketchup was my doing. It ended up all over my face, naturally. To warm us up we got a small cup of mulled wine which sadly, was served in a rather unspectacular looking paper cup. I was hoping that it would be served in festive little mug. But to make up for the lack of festivity of the paper cup, I stole a very cute mug from the Christmas market in Munich 🙂
We also got some almonds to nibble on for the walk along the market.
And of course we also had to pick up some fudge. It’s impossible to walk past something so delicious-looking and resist even a small bite.
We spent a couple of hours walking around town and before we wore entirely frozen, we figured it was time warm up with some drinks. A friend led us to Colonna & Small’s, an award-winning coffee shop. Rumor has it, they sell the best coffees in town. Clearly, that made me happy.
We were quickly lectured about the variety of coffees they had to offer this week. I chose Debello, an Ethiopian blend which had notes of chocolate, fudge, amaretto and wafer.
When a coffee is made with this much love you know it’s going to taste good, no matter what. I had a sip of everyone’s beverage and concluded that Christina’s latte was the best, followed by my drink. Fraser’s espresso was simply to bitter for my taste buds.
Seeing as I had a VERY early wake up call the next day and we had about a 1.5 hour drive home, we headed back at 6pm.
It was the perfect way to end the term and who knows, Bath might be seeing a lot more of me in the future.