My charming bed-and-breakfast is located in the English countryside!
I left the Barcelona hotel shortly after breakfast for a flight to Bristol, England, en route to the Three Choirs Festival in Gloucester. After spending every single night in a hotel for the last four weeks (!), I decided to make a booking at a bed and breakfast. When our tour leader, Pilar, heard my plans, she suggested I take a taxi there, thinking it might be in the countryside. When I arrived at the airport, I phoned the B&B with the thought of asking them how I should get there from the airport. No answer, so I went ahead and booked a taxi.
When I arrived, there was no one here and all the doors were locked. I stood around for about 20 minutes when two men drove up. They turned out to be schoolteachers from Germany on a one week vacation, booked at the same B&B. After we all waited around for another 15 minutes, one of them suggested we go visit Wells Cathedral until the official check-in time of 4:00 pm.
Now, I know what you are thinking—that it would be foolish for me to get into a car with strangers. I can just imagine my family would be worried sick about me. But I did it, and we spent a wonderful afternoon at Wells Cathedral, about a half-hour away. The men, Helmut and Manfred, are from Bremen—the same city as the founders of the Lutheran Church of Honolulu. I gave them one of my business cards—the one with the Beckerath nameplate, showing its home as Hamburg, not far from Bremen. They said they are coming to Hawaii for a vacation in two years.
I bought a pictorial book about the organs and organists of Wells Cathedral and learned that the first organ was installed in 1343. Several instruments followed, and the present organ contains pipe work by Henry Willis from 1857. Most recently the firm of Harrison and Harrison rebuilt the present organ in 1973-1974.
My taxi will call for me at 6 am tomorrow, so I had better finish this up. I will take the train to Gloucester where I will spend the next week. Guess who I will meet there?! Tim Carney and Doug Hall from the Hawaii Masterworks Chorus and my long-time traveling companion, Vreni Griffith.