England Travel Journal – Day 13

Bow Windows Book Shop, Lewes

The women wanted to go wine-tasting but didn’t want to take the double decker bus with the commoners. There was talk of hiring a private wine tour guide, but they could not find one.

So, I agreed to forget about what I wanted to do and offered to drive them around all day to the vineyards. I rarely drink wine anymore–not for religious reasons but gastrointestinal ones–and planned on just waiting in the car and finishing my book on Augustine of Canterbury.

The words of Jesus came to mind:

“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”

John 15:12-13

Granted, my sacrifice was not on the scale of martyrdom, but it wasn’t nothing either. I have to admit too that in the back of my mind was the possibility that if they finished with the grape before 5 p.m., on the way back to Brighton we could stop in Lewes, where I had heard there was a great antiquarian book shop.

We left around 11 am and drove to Ridgeview Wine Estate. It was closed. Then we drove to Court Garden Farms. Closed. I then decided to save us a drive and check on Artelium Wine Estate (our next stop) on the internet. Closed. I sympathized with the rest of the team. I told them I was sorry because I knew how they were looking forward to the wine-tasting. The Wife then said, “Well, let’s just go to Lewes.”

No wine tasting today

Bow Windows Book Shop is perhaps the best I’ve ever visited in terms of a brick and mortar antiquarian book shop. I spent 2 hours there, bought a number of good old leather bound books, and still have my eye on a few more I may purchase from them online.

Lewes is also home to the Rights of Man Inn, where we enjoyed our last pub meal of the trip. Yes, you American History buffs guessed it: Thomas Paine once lived in Lewes.

After dropping off the rental car at Hertz, Mohammed the Uber driver drove us back to the The Grand Brighton Hotel. We went immediately to the bar, where I ordered a latte and the gals ordered flights of wine to make up for the wine-tasting experience they had been denied earlier in the day.

Our trip was nearing its end. So we went around the table talking about our favorite parts of the trip (Oxford, C.S. Lewis’s home, Guthrum’s baptismal font were mentioned), as well as our least favorite (Brighton, service at the The Grand Brighton), and we began discussing venues for our next GSB adventure. GS

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