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Beyond the Lone Islands

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

About Me and Languages (3)

In the summer after 9th grade, before I started 'senior high school', we went to Britain again. This time for three weeks, by car, and spending the nights at various small country inns and hotels ("Fawlty Towers" kind of places…). We arrived in Harwich, went across the country to North Wales, then down to the south coast, up again via Staffordshire to Scotland, as far north as Inverness, and finally back home from Newcastle.

Some of the many sights we visited were Cambridge, Caernavon Castle in Wales, the Roman baths in Bath, the Wookey Hole caves in Somerset, seaside town Lyme Regis in Dorset, Southampton and Isle of Wight, New Forest National Park with famous wild horses (really wild - one of them kicked my little brother!), Beaulieu with Motor Museum - and of course Stonehenge.

Postcard from Beaulieu. (click on picture to enlarge)
(I put this one in as a special treat for blogfriend Dan. Little did he know when he asked about me and languages what extensive reading it would lead to.)

Me at Stonehenge.
Fashion note: This was the year when skirts suddenly went below the knee after having been way up above during the 60's!

On our way north, I got to spend a day with a penfriend and her family in Stoke-on-Trent in Staffordshire, known as the home of English pottery industry. They took me to see an old manor house from the 15th century called Little Moreton Hall. I don't believe there was a single straight angle in that building! My parents and my brother spent the day elsewhere, and picked me up again towards the end of the day.

Little Moreton Hall, penfriend and her family.

On our way to Scotland, we passed Hadrian's Wall, which once marked the northern border of the Roman Empire.


At Loch Ness, looking for the Monster.

We did also visit some places in Scotland where there were less sheep and more people. Like Edinburgh, Balmoral Castle (the Queen's summer palace), and St Andrews to play a little golf (very little – more like mini).

Before we went back home again, we had another whiff of English seaside life, at Whitley Bay on the North Sea Coast:

This is the British idea of beach life. At least back in those days. At most, you lifted your skirt above your knees and waded a few steps out into the water. Preferably, you stayed fully dressed in a deck chair.

Nuns at the pleasure pier in Whitley Bay. My British readers will have to tell me whether that is/was a common sight or not!

Note on the photographs:
The photos including the two postcards have been scanned from my photo album. The sepia coloured ones are originally black-and-white. (Sepia effect applied in Picasa 3.) The colours in some of the coloured photos from this journey have kept exceptionally well. I have colour photos in later albums that have totally faded away and are all dim shades of purple by now...

The story will go on. I promise though - when I get past the teen years, I'll speed it up a bit!


rae said...

That sounds like one amazing trip.

Dan Felstead said...

Dawn Treader...I am taking the journey with you! And thanks for the Castle picture! This looks like the journey of a lifetime for a Midwesterner like me! I would give my right arm (I am left handed!) to take the trip.


GB said...

I'm really enjoying this trip too.

Ah yes. Mini skirts (they were more like belts really - just like NZ last summer)and then the long ones. I so enjoy memory lane. But then at my age it's a long lane to travel down.

Nuns on Whitley Bay pleasure pier! What a thought. I, for one would have no idea whether they are still there. I cannot recall seeing a nun in a habit for many years.

DawnTreader said...

Yes, Memory Lane is becoming a very long and winding road... Hard to know where to begin, and when to stop, and easy to get lost in details along the way! However, I'm enjoying this little project myself; and choosing a certain aspect (language) at least gives something to steer by. I also find it helpful to have some idea who I'm writing for, besides myself... So all comments make me happy! :) (Well, at least all comments I've had so far...)

Scriptor Senex said...

I see plenty of nuns in habits even nowadays but cannot recall seeing one at a pleasure beach!


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