Exploring South West England
What do you imagine when you think of England? For many people, it’s the city of London and Buckingham Palace or Big Ben and London Bridge. Or perhaps, The London Eye, the perfect example of the contrast between the old and the new. I must confess, images of Monty Python come to mind as King Arthur “gallups” on his horse of coconuts while the black knight stands his ground only to keep nothing but his courage. But these comedic scenes are grounded in real history and a history that comes alive when you actually walk the grounds and the castles of noblemen and noble men.
England has experienced centuries of war where they were ruled by invaders from the north, south, and east. Romans, Normans, Vikings, and even Venetians once controlled territory in the United Kingdom. Over the years, diversity entered the gene pool as well as impacting the architecture, food, and customs of this galvanized country. Refugees from France, Russia, and Ireland have added their influence to the melting pot. With so much diversity preserved over time, England is sure to excite any traveler, but first you must get out of London, and for us it meant heading south west…
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The Renaissance Man of the Pratesi Clan. An active photography hobbyist that led to teaching in a local college was put aside for a career as an adjunct professor of economics, statistics, and finance at three U.S. universities. A change in life created a change in careers and corporate America was his playground for more than a decade. The rewards of teaching never passed and Roger entered management consulting, which united his business skills and teaching skills. He retired from consulting as a Partner with the Boston Consulting Group. Throughout those years, photography remained a passionate hobby.
Life served up more unexpected changes and severe medical problems sidelined all careers while he focused on healing from Stage 4 cancer and heart problems. With cancer in check, life had to move forward, so he joined Gwen in her passion for food and travel. After all, he traveled the world in his prior careers and was interested in the culinary arts, but more importantly, he possessed the complimentary skill of wine and spirits knowledge as a long time collector, and consumer.
Today, he combines his loves for food, wine, travel, and Gwen with his business background and passion to teach and help others while capturing the journey in photographs, videography, and the stories of the people and places along the way. And, by the way, those medical problems are all gone. Enjoy Life. You only get one. It’s all about the people and the experiences.