There is no easy answer to the question referred to above. Let's work backwards, shall we?
Bodily I am in Bath. Not the hot relaxing cleaning time at the end of a day walking in the rain, but the city: Bath Spa. I made it here last night after missing my bus to Bristol. Let me explain.
I last left you, oh fair readers, in the mountains of Cumbria. Well, to make short a story that could be quite long, suffice to say that my new friend James had a Couchsurfer coming on Wednesday. I didn't want to be a burden to his excellent hospitality any longer, AND I wanted to get to London to see the Harry Potter premiere. However, on the 12th, after looking online for an hour hoping to buy an advance ticket, I found that I had misinformed by two people, completely separately from each other, that Harry Potter was indeed premiering on July 14th in London. After reviewing the mistake, I found that they had confused July 14th 2010 with July 14th 2011, when the second installment of the last part was to be premiered in London. The first installment premieres November 19th.
So I had now purchased a ticket to London for no reason. What's more, I had been waiting for the number of 'the London contact' for a few days now, and had still not recieved the message. James offered to drive me to Newcastle and to spend the day around Hadrian's wall, which was excellent. We apparently can't go anywhere without hiking! I got on my bus and on the 8-hour drive I tried to arrange a place for me to stay and was successful, thanks to my wonderful teacher and her son. I got to London at 10:30 pm and after navigating the metro, finally got to his house at around 11:45. We stayed up talking for a while, because he is really an incredible guy. The problem was, his parents-in-law (also incredibly nice) were coming the next day, so I decided to book a ticket to Bristol, which was the next place I was going anyway. The next morning, I met his lovely wife (named the same as my girlfriend, so it got confusing when we were talking about it!), and his beautiful daughter. But I left at around five for Victoria station, hoping to get to Bristol in time to sort out a bed and breakfast before eight.
It was not to be. I got to the station just in time for my bus to leave. When I tried to get on it, however, another family went out with me and made it to the ticket man before me. He looked at her ticket and said, "Sorry, it's a funfare...I can't let you board yet." Well, mine was a funfare, too! I went inside and it was already past the time for the bus to leave, then the time changed to thirty minutes after. Apparently it was delayed. Oh well, I thought, I'll get a pasty and wait here. So I waited only to find out after I got in the line for the already late bus that my ticket was invalid--I had missed my bus! Not only that, but I had to buy another ticket! And it was going to be a full hour later! Turns out that the family was asking if she could board early for the next bus. A legitimate but frustrating mistake on my part.
Well, I thought, how in the world am I going to get accomodation in Bristol this late for a reasonable price? A couchsurfer had given me his number in Bath in case of an emergency situation (he already had a surfer), and at this point, there was no way I could find a place to stay at that late for any less than £70. So I called him, and he said it was fine, gave me directions, etc. Go to Bristol train station, get on a train to Bath, and a bus to the University.
When I got to Bristol it was 10:20. All buses had stopped running to the train station, and both the cab drivers and the bus drivers told me that trains had stopped running to Bath anyway. There was a bus leaving at 11:00 for Bath, so I got on that. But I didn't get to Bath in time to catch a bus to the University, so I had to hire a cab. I got there at 12:10, then slept on the floor of his flat.
So, in spirit, I'm a bit down right now. I've got a ton of aches and cricks and I'm tired of lugging the backpack around. I'm probably staying at a backpacker's hostel tonight in Bath.
Not only that, but Ronald Hutton is not in Bristol right now, and I might not get to meet personally with him at all -- it might have to wait for Skype, like Roger Griffin. Well, this library computer is £3.60 an hour, so I probably should go. I'll upload pics from Hadrian's wall later and also inform you about the state of my research (mind). I want to go visit the Roman buildings around Bath (excited!), that will surely cheer me up. Maybe there's even a Mithraeum! We'll see.