Of Stonehenge, long highways, and Cholderton.

After the vast behemoth that is London, what better than to leave the big city behind and relax in the tranquil farm community of Cholderton? If peaceful and quiet were people, they’d live here. To be honest however I wasn’t really there for the village itself, or even the neat hostel (And one of the only hostel in the yha organization which didn’t prove to be a dismal horrible place which I would dream of later burning to the ground and cackling over its decimated remains, indeed, I didn’t even know it WAS a yha until looking up the hostel for this quick writeup. Anyway…) which was also a working exotic breeds farm with some amazingly beautiful gardens. Oh no. I was there for Stonehenge, which I’d been asured lay only a short dance away.

First off, the hostel itself was in Cholderton which is somehow separate from Salisbury, where the train was, and yet still near enough to be part of Salisbury or some such. Or was it Cholderton which was the town and Salisbury the village? Either way, it was mind boggling and something we’d not been prepared to deal with. Inevitably money was spent and Taxi were taken, which at least resulted in us having a fun cab driver who I enjoyed talking to about the local countryside while driving through said countryside. On our way back we’d take a bus, nothing personal cab guy who was kind enough to give us his card, but it was simply cheaper and we actually knew where we were going this time with more than a vague address to work with. From there having just spent a small kings ransom on transportation, the idea was “Hey, Stonehenge ain’t that far from here! Alls we gotta do is follow this one highway…” and save a few bucks. This, predictably, was not the most brilliant of ideas.

Let me put it this way; that tiny stretch that looked so insignificant on the map? Now I can’t recall exactly, but I’m pretty sure it turned out to be two hours worth of walking along an extremely busy, loud, and undoubtedly dangerous highway. And I walk damn fast too. It was hardly the most pleasant experience, despite the nice countryside. On the bright side however it did lead up to the moment where, exhausted and with ringing ears from the nearly perpetual roar of vehicles driving by, I saw in the distance a strange shape and pointed, yelling to my companion “I think I see Stonehenge!”. It went out of sight for a bit, and my shoulders slumped with defeat as the thought of another hours walk danced through my mind, now also wondering whether I was seeing things or not and going delusional. But no, lo and behold, we step over the next hill and sitting there gloriously is Stonehenge, shimmering in the brilliant heat which naturally chose that day to show up. It was… beautiful!

Stonehenge itself turned out to be far less touristy than I’d feared. There was a thing set up there naturally, and a fee, and other tourists, and a gift shop. But really it wasn’t especially crowded or loud, the prices weren’t too steep, and overall it was a very humbling sight and experience. I like to think that by walking and seeing the stone circle the way I had, I got the full, classic experience of how so long ago the locals must have felt as they’d too gone “Damn, am I seeing things now?”.

Stonehenge is a buncha big rocks piled up on eachother in a funny circle. Don’t really sound all that impressive (Unless you’re the type who reads the conspiracy papers which link stone circles to alien invasions and Elvis that is!) but in person it’s a whole nother deal. Stonehenge really is majestic in size and scale, especially when you take the time to consider just how old this thing is and how much damn work it woulda taken to carry these massive boulders here to this otherwise barren place, now turned farmland. I was somewhat humbled, I wasn’t really expecting all that much and, truth be told, was more or less seeing the damn rocks because, well, they’re famous! Now I can understand *why* these rocks are so famous.

Took another cab back to the hostel.

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One Comment on “Of Stonehenge, long highways, and Cholderton.”

  1. Jenny Says:

    I read somewhere that these stones where once hidden from the lower classes, evidence are the remains of walls. Or so they say.


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