A chill in the air announced the arrival of autumn as my 2500 mile journey around the UK drew to a close. I’d had a lot of fun playing the tour guide for my visiting American friends, and being a tourist myself. I took more pictures than I could possibly share, but I’ve picked a handful that I think give a fair sample of England, my country, my home.

Just two days after Susan had flown back to America I was joined by my friend Missy from Oregon. We packed a near two week time period with trips to various cities, towns and villages taking in, amongst other places, The Lake District, Liverpool, Oxford, and London.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could step into history and experience it for real. I was never really engaged by my history classes at school. I think that’s because it wasn’t really personal or related to any kind of life I could relate to. Facts and figures are interesting, but as I walk down historic roads or along pathways that have witnessed the passing of ages, I imagine the lives of the people who once made their way along these same routes all those years before. I imagine the lives of people to whom the history books have made no reference.

Liverpool is a great city for trips through your imagination. The port city was built on the wealth of the shipping industry and all the torrid tales that accompany that. The Titanic was registered in Liverpool by the White Star Line. That company has since vanished amongst mergers and corporate acquisitions but the companies former headquarters still stands, unrecognized and unoccupied, on a busy road near the docks that once made it wealthy.

In the shadow of the cities vast protestant cathedral is St James’s Cemetery where 57,774 people are buried. One of the most interesting things I found there though wasn’t the headstones but graffiti, very old graffiti!

St James’s Cemetery was once a stone quarry dating back to at least the 16th century. The oldest graffiti carvings were most likely done by quarry workers who etched their initials into the sandstone, the earliest example of which we found was dated 1727!

London was the final long distant location on the tour. It’s simply impossible to see or experience London in just a couple of days, but I think Missy got a pretty good taste. I keep promising myself a few days alone in London to wander around and photograph the hectic and seemingly chaotic whirlwind that defines it and makes London one of the greatest cities in the world.

And so, after nearly three weeks and two and a half thousand miles (that’s 4.25278571 x — 10-10 light years!), my tour around the UK comes to an end. We saw so much, but missed even more. It may be just a small island, but it’s not called Great Britain for nothing.

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