Summer can be a funny time for a 'Secret Life' it turns out. Lots of family and friends visiting, and will they buy into the whole concept? Well they will if you don't tell them! And so it was last week when my mum and dad were down for their annual London trip. The colour and number I was challenged with this week was 'Green - 6'. Well the 'Green' category is for 'Outside of London'...how would this go down when my folks had come down to the City from Aberdeen? Quite well it turns out if you sell it in a way that makes it look like it was their idea. "How do you fancy seeing somewhere else since London is so accessible to lots of places?" I asked. Admittedly this might have been a more difficult sell if I had drawn Santiago or Iceland...however the Secret Life gods were on my side and Bath was the chosen destination. Hooray, just 90mins from London to this beautiful historic city. Again, it is not somewhere I had been before and so deferred to Visit Bath's website to see what tours we could do to make the most of our day there. One that caught my eye was a tour guide called Jamie who runs 'Laugh at Bath' walking tours. After arriving and easing ourselves in the the ambience with a pub lunch and sample of the famous west country cider, we decided to do a small tour of our own before meeting Jamie. Where else but to the historic Roman baths?
For some reason my folks were slightly reluctant to do a tour of the baths..."will it be smelly?" I was on a mission though to really 'do' this city to the max and so off we went. They soon changed their minds - it is such a fascinating place. Seeing the Sacred Spring where 1,170,000 litres of water bubbles up at 46deg, and the Spring Overflow where the water gushes through. I did realise however that I hadn’t needed to take my swimming costume so kept it out of sight in my bag.
And so off to meet our tour guide in amongst the hubub of graduation time outside Bath Abbey. My parents and I have become quite the connoisseurs of walking tours from their various trips to London. This one really did deliver. Almost 2 hours of insider info and hidden gems for just £8 per person. We started with a look round the Pump Room and a sample of the famous restorative waters of Bath. Then Jamie took us round some of the key architectural sights of Bath including the hidden Georgian garden and of course the Royal Crescent. As our small group walked along engaged with light-hearted stories and anecdotes we watched larger groups being overwhelmed with dry historical facts by their tour guides. I had to include this visual representation of my dad demonstrating a cure for a sore throat...I kept my mum at arms length from tightening the rope!
Denise Yeats is an events director, communications consultant, endurance athlete and avid adventurer.