The plan was simple. We had tickets to visit Highclere Castle (location for the series Downton Abbey), remnant of a previous cancelled itinerary for which we could not get a refund but could reschedule. Why not celebrate our anniversary by redeeming the tickets by making a brief loop around London, Oxford (which we had seen briefly) and Cambridge (which we had never seen).
Prospects appeared promising when both the US and UK embarked on ambitious immunization campaigns, but we ran out of runway. Highclere is only open for these types of tours until early July, and US visitors were not welcome in that timeframe. So our fifth planned trip to Europe went down the drain.