Featured photo for English Driving Tour

English Driving Tour

In August of 2000 I rented a little Vauxhall Corsa and did a driving tour of the southern expanse of England. In addition to visiting Carolyn, I drove to Oxford, Dover, Stonehenge, Sommerset, Exmoor, and the Lynmouth Coast. It took me about a day to get used to driving on the left; e.g., the first day I smacked a curb as I wasn’t used to the expanse of “car” to the left of me, and a few hours later made a right turn into the wrong lane. From that point on I kept having to tell myself, “remember, WIDE right turn.” Roundabouts (traffic circles) were also a little tricky; I actually spent 20 minutes just watching how cars negotiated a 3-lane roundabout in Oxford, and came to the conclusion that people just know where other cars are and don’t really have hard-and-fast rules. I actually came to really like roundabouts and their efficient flow of traffic; much less stopping than with traffic lights.

Excerpts from the only email I wrote during this trip in England:

It just so happened that I was passing by an internet cafe in the Soho district of London, and I couldn’t resist that 35 min per £1 rates even though I am supposed to be on vacation away from computers.

So far I’ve had a very relaxing time here, getting lots of rest and relaxation. So far I’ve only visited London and some parts of Oxford, although when I drove up to Oxford I could not find the university, which is why I ended up stopping at a park to eat a sandwich and read a book.

The more interesting things that have occurred so far include trying to understand how the roads here work. I’m finally getting used to this drive-on-the-left-side type of driving.

Atlantic Ocean
View of the Atlantic from the Lynmouth coast.
Green Bay B&B in Sommerset
Cows grazing... hopefully not mad ones!
Port of Dover.
Dunster Castle.
Flowers at Dunster Castle.
Dunster Castle.
Steps to the Dunster Castle.
View of the English Channel from Dover.
English road.
Another pretty English road.
English country road.
Sheep along A39.
Field opposite of Stonehenge.  Kind of looks like CA!
To Holland park with Carolyn.
Inside Holland park.
Kensington Gardens.
Another lamb.
Lynmouth coast.
Lynmouth Incline.
England 8/00
Porlock Hill.  It's steep!
25% grade on Porlock Hill!
My trusty little Vauxhall Corsa.
Characteristically narrow village road.
The white cliffs of Dover.