Latitude: 51°10'11.98"N; Longitude: 0°10'21.42"W
We had a L O N G drive to the hotel (Corner House Hotel in Horley) which is very close to Gatwick Airport. We kept is lively with The Mists of Avalon. But it was still a little too long for all of our tastes. Though the scenery has been remarkable for most of the trip, the highway (I believe it was the A1(M)) south towards London is less than lovely. Gatwick Airport is still south of London and not really in London. We never saw London on this trip. It's for another time.
Latitude: 51° 9'1.57"N; Longitude: 0°10'35.95"W
We dropped off our rental car (or would that be a 'hire car'?) at Hertz and then went into Gatwick to wait for the flight. What a wonderful trip we all had. There were so many cute towns and sweet places to see. The countryside is so pastoral. Parts of it, with the rolling green hills and grazing bovine, looking strikingly like...New England. Imagine! The history of the UK is incredible, from the Romans to the Vikings and the Normans. Catholicism, Christianity, paganism. The castles and cathedrals, royalty and the commoners, or I mean everybody else. Just driving around and getting out at places along the way reveal the long history of being conquered and a history of conquering and creating the British Empire. It's all so fascinating to someone from the U.S., where our history of colonialism started in the 1600's, we have no real royals (except for maybe our super wealthy) and we are a much larger, geographically speaking.
The trip was a great way to celebrate the end of the school term for the kids and the wrapping up of the Fulbright and sabbatical work for us. If I could shell out some advice...got your kids a passport and take them places, early and often.
The photo at top is from Alnmouth, England, the second photo is from Cambridge, England, and the last photo was taken in Edinburgh, Scotland. These photos and more from the trip are located on my Flickr page.