Monday, May 30, 2011

England the King Richard Edition

My sister is fascinated by King Richard so we spent some time at Bosworth Field on our first Sunday in England. We took the tour and learned more about the War of the Roses.

The next day we spent some time in Leicester. The first stop we made was at the Guildhall which was right next door to the Leicester Cathedral. Leicester Cathedral is where King Richard is said to be entombed. The Cathedral is really beautiful and the stain-glass is really stunning.

We then spent some time at the Jewry Wall. This is the remains of a Roman bathhouse. If you look at the picture below you can see the St. Martin's cathedral behind the wall and see that the bricks from the wall were used to construct the cathedral. They blend together very well.

The last bit of time spent in Leicester was spent wandering the castle gardens. It was very peaceful there and the flowers were all out.

I had not had much interest in King Richard, but doing the tours on Sunday and Monday made me want to do some reading. Who knows when it will be done, but it could happen.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

England 5

Floating down the canal we also saw some swans. There were actually two swan couples with females sitting on the nests. I thought I had missed the picture of the first nest, but it turned out that I got it okay. Not very well framed, but okay from a moving boat.

The second picture is of our boat coming out of Saddington tunnel. The tunnel is 808 meters long, that's a little over half a mile. The first time through Aunt G steered and the second time through Mom did the steering. Mom said that was a good time for her at the tiller. She could bounce off the walls without worrying about hitting another boat or running aground.

Happy knitting and spinning.

Monday, May 23, 2011

England 4

We saw a LOT of ducklings with mommas and poppas. They were swimming all around in the canal. There were a number of times when the babies got separated while the boat went past. That means there was a lot of quacking until they could be reunited.

I took quite a few pictures of the bridges as we passed under them. If you enlarge this picture you will see the front of the boat at the bottom in the middle. I loved seeing all the moss and weeds growing out of the mortar of the bridges. We went under about twenty bridges and they fascinated me every time.

Happy knitting and spinning.

Friday, May 20, 2011

England 3

One of the first fun sights were these two sheep. They were munching on the May trees along the tow path. On an aside thought, we thought the May trees were spirea, because the blooms and scent were very familiar. The next thing you knew those two were running towards us and then ducking into their pasture through a hole in the fencing/shrubbery.

I think one of the most enjoyable things for me on this trip was the abundance of sheep here along the canal. I took MANY pictures of the sheep and the wool along the way. After all, what better for a spinner than to be around all that wool. I wonder what breed these two were? They almost look like Suffolk, but I'm not sure.

Happy knitting and spinning.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

England 2

We are off!!!!! My sister, B, at the tiller with my aunt standing watch. B's first move was to steer us into some willows. Luckily the gentleman giving her steering lessons was still on board and got us out of said willows. All of us had the chance to spend some time steering the boat during our week on the canal. There wasn't enough room for all four of us to be up where the tiller was, but we took turns being outside and spending some time down below.

Last night at knit night someone asked what the inside of the boat looked like. The first one is looking up three steps heading out of the living quarters and the second shot is from the same spot looking into the living space. This is the kitchen area. See it is almost like a camp trailer.
There were quite a few boats that we saw in our travels that you could tell were used quite frequently. In fact, we spent a little travel time with a couple who are out on their boat every long weekend they can get.

Whenever we would tell someone (a cab driver, a tour guide, a store clerk, or someone we met at church) that we were on the long-boats, they always said they so wanted to do that. We got a ride back to the boat one Sunday night after some sightseeing and gave a tour of the boat to the two women who graciously picked us up from said sightseeing and took us back to the boat.

The link for the tiller talks about canal boating, maybe something I should have read before going on this trip.

Check in tomorrow to see what picture I put up. Happy knitting and spinning.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Things I've Never Done

I have never flown over any ocean before, but at the end of last month I was able to spend some time in England with my mom, her sister (my aunt) and one of my sisters. I have never spent any length of time on a boat especially one that you sleep on, but got the chance to do this also. I also had never ridden on a train, but got the chance to do that two times while there.

Now that I finally have the pictures off the camera, I can share some of the fun things we saw and did. The first picture is the narrow long-boat where we spent the first seven days of our trip. This boat worked out really well for us. It is made for six people, but with there only being four of us it gave us all a little room and not too crowded. This boat reminded me a lot of a camp trailer and the times my parents used to take us camping while we were growing up. We started from Market Harborough and meandered down the canal for a few days and then returned. We then spent the next four days in and around London. I won't show you all the pictures--I took 636!!--but a few of my favorites will work there way onto here.

I did take some knitting along and will show you at the end of this narration what I worked on. It's now almost done. I'm working on the bind off.

Happy knitting and spinning.