Hello, my name is Ashleigh and I am a bookworm. From a young age I found solace, hope and excitement, living in the pages of my favourite books, and apart from a short period of time in my life, I have never left the comfort of my favourite characters minds, hearts or shoes.
As we approach the end of the year, my mind naturally turns to what I want to do next year, and one of my prospective New Years resolutions is to travel more, and this time, not just in the pages of my books.
So here is a humble bookworm’s travel bucket list…
- Jane Austen Centre, Bath UK. Irony of all ironies that with Jane Austen’s dislike of Bath (along with Anne Elliot’s…) this small city should become the home of her work. One of my favourite books, Persuasion takes place, partly, in Bath, and as a past resident I was always excited to be able to go to places that were significant in the book, and think of her sullenly gracing the streets of Bath decades before I was doing the same. Despite these facts, I would love to return to Bath for a visit, seeing it with the eager eyes of a tourist, and visit the Jane Austen Centre for the first time…
- Bronte Parsonage Museum, Haworth, Yorkshire UK. Jane Eyre is one of my favourite novels, in much the same way for me as Persuasion; featuring a beaten down woman that is just in need of sunlight and a little watering for her to bloom. I also read Wuthering Heights, and some poems, and fell in love with the dramatic writing style of their time. It was only a few years ago that I discovered there was a museum, and since then I have wanted to go and experience the wilds of the Yorkshire countryside, as well as the Bronte Parsonage Museum. Everyone pray my husband reads this far and starts making these trips happen, OK?
- Beatrix Potter’s Home, Hill Top, Cumbria UK. Since I was a little girl I was delighted and entranced by the stories and the illustrations of Beatrix Potter’s books. The Tales of Tom Kitten, Jemima Puddle-duck and, of course, Peter Rabbit. Kittens and rabbits wearing clothes? I’m all here for it. Ducks with attitude problems? Delusions of grandeur? Yes, yes, yes. I think it’s this girlhood fascination with her work that makes me want to visit Hill Top so much, and hopefully be inspired by the idyllic setting.
- Harry Potter Studio Tour, London UK. Again. I went a couple of years ago, having received the tickets for Christmas from my husband, and I loved it. I would love to go again, now that Privet Drive is a part of the set (no longer just the door), and since the Forbidden Forest part was put in. I will also need to take about £100 of spending money (at least). Of course, I know this is very much linked to the films instead of the books, but how could I write a bookworm’s travel bucket list and not include Harry Potter?
- Lacock Abbey, Lacock, UK. Lacock Abbey featured in the Harry Potter films as part of the grounds of Hogwarts, and is such a beautiful location, that it has a place on my list. Lacock is near Bath, so I would have to combine this with a trip to Bath, but I think Hogwarts would be a worthy detour…
- Shreveport, Louisiana, USA. OK, so this might not happen in the next few months, but ever since I read the Sookie Stackhouse novels, which is the series the TV show True Blood was loosely based on, I have wanted to take a visit. I think when you spend so much time in a novel that features in a real place, it’s natural to long to go there, and overlap your imagination and the writer’s imagination with the real thing.
Is there anywhere that you want to visit from a book? What influences your travel bucket list?