So, last week I posted Part I of my Bookish Bucket List, inspired by Jessica from Quirky Bookworm, and Eagle-Eyed Editor. (And then I discovered 50 Bookish Things, via Rebecca from Love at First Book, and now, well, I just have way too much to do!) Anyway, when I posted Part I, I promised a second list dedicated to literary places I dream of visiting one day. Because if there’s one thing I love almost as much as reading, it’s traveling! And fortunately for me, I have a husband who also loves to travel and who is remarkably patient with my literary sight-seeing. (The only time he’s ever grumbled was when I took too long over Chaucer’s memorial in Westminster Abbey. He doesn’t like Westminster Abbey… but that’s a post for another day.) So, without further rambling, here’s Part II of my bookish bucket list: the literary travel destinations.
1. The Bronte Parsonage at Haworth – Since Charlotte and Anne Bronte are two of my favorite authors (sorry to Emily, but I just didn’t really enjoy Wuthering Heights the way I enjoyed her sisters’ works), and Jane Eyre is my favorite book of all time, I simply must visit Haworth and pay homage to my literary idols.
2. A Jane Austen tour of England – I’ve done some of the Jane tour already, since I’ve been to Bath. I checked out the lane where Captain Wentworth and Anne have their heart-to-heart in Persuasion, had tea at the Pump Room, visited the Jane Austen Centre and stopped by 25 Gay Street (one of Jane’s addresses in Bath). But I want to do all of those again, and also add Chawton and Lyme Regis to the list.
3. Torquay – Hubby and I overnighted in Devon on our last trip to England and it was gorgeous. I’d like to go back to the region, and what better place than the laid-back town that Dame Agatha Christie called home?
4. Take Peanut to Green Gables – I visited Prince Edward Island with my grandparents when I was twelve and my head basically exploded when we went to Green Gables. It was like the mother ship was calling me home. I love, love, love L.M. Montgomery – so much that I even named my daughter after my favorite of her heroines (and okay, the name happened to be a family name as well – two birds, one stone). I can’t wait to introduce Peanut to L.M. Montgomery’s world. If she’s even half the fan that I was as a little girl, she’ll LOVE seeing PEI and Anne’s house. And I want to see it again through her eyes.
5. Go back to the British Library again, and again, and again – I’ve been twice, but I’ll never be done with the British Library. Seeing the words “Reader, I married him” in Charlotte Bronte’s own hand was one of the biggest thrills of my life the first time. And the second time. And I have to imagine it will be just as thrilling the third time, and the fourth, and the fifth, and…
6. Take in a performance of the Paris Opera at the Palais Garnier – The Palais Garnier is the original seat of the Paris Opera, and was the setting for The Phantom of the Opera, one of my favorite books-turned-musicals. I’ve seen the Broadway show five times (three times on Broadway and twice with the touring company), and I loved the book. The Paris Opera mostly performs at their new home, the Opera Bastille, but they still do some performances (mainly classical operas) at the Palais Garnier, and I want to see one. I’m sitting a safe distance away from the chandelier, though.
7. See Shakespeare performed at the Globe in London, and at the Minack Theatre in Cornwall – I’ve visited both, but in the theatre off-season, and I want to go catch a performance.
8. Hike the South West Coast Path around Cornwall and Devon and write a travel memoir - I have always thought it would be fun to take a long trek and write about my experiences, a la Cheryl Strayed on the Pacific Crest Path, Simon Armitage on the Pennine Way, or Bill Bryson on the Appalachian Trail, except I’ll finish my hike. And I won’t go alone, either – hubby and Peanut are coming with me.
9. Hear Peanut recite A.A. Milne’s “Buckingham Palace” during the Changing of the Guard – I just think this would be the cutest thing ever. EVER.
10. Buy a rambling old farmhouse in Provence and fix it up, just like Peter Mayle – Ha! As if I’ll ever get around to this one. Well, maybe someday. What are bucket lists for if not for the big, wild ideas? (Remind me how much I loved A Year in Provence when I’m wrapped in six parkas, shouting “Merde!” at le Mistral.)
What sorts of travel destinations are on your Bookish Bucket List?