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Mid-Week Desk-Chair Travel: English Cottage Escape

Lets go back to a time before the recession, a time when we did things like travel for fun and throw away paper towels and partake in the fine luxury that is the dry cleaners. Well I’m exaggerating, but I am feeling terribly vacation-deprived. So here goes the first of a new series of mid-week escape travel pieces.

I dream of a solitary vacation, where I can read and rest and write and drink tea and sit by a fireplace and make like Emily Dickinson or Virginia Woolf (minus the depression and lesbianism). “A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction,” Woolf said. So here tis.


Boy it would be a good novel coming from here. I’d call it: “Eat, Sleep, Chill.”

Seriously though, you can rent this cottage through the Royal Oak Foundation, an American booster-group for the National Trust of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Cottages start at $352 for a week in low season. And now that the dollar is creeping up on the pound, you’ll get more pints at the pub than you could last year.

From a jazz-era Warwickshire cottage (a holiday home to the 2nd Viscount Bearstead) to a cliff-edge lighthouse-keepers cottage in Devon, the properties are all historic and special – and staying at them helps support their preservation.


If you’re an Anglophile, you can join the Foundation for $55, which grants admission to more than 300 historic homes and gardens, 700 miles of coastline and 620,000 acres of open countryside, plus stateside lectures and events. Coming up is the 2009 Garden Tour of “New” Gardens of the English Cotswolds, which sounds amazing if the rest of the gardens are anything like this one below.


Apparently the Cotswolds is where much of the country’s garden innovation is born. The group tour will have access to private gardens and meet owners and lunch on the properties. Sounds devine! Maybe I should skip the seclusion and take my camera to these gardens instead. Sounds like a great book.

Where shall we go next wednesday?



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