We are in the Oak Tree Lodge in Whitley Bay getting ready to start our walk tomorrow. We start with 12 miles, quite a bit of it is through Newcastle along the river. I think the Tyne, but it could be the Ware. Ate some pasta at an Italian restaurant along the seafront. We were one of three groups of patrons. One was a family with two little boys. At some point during the meal, the smallest one started to fuss and the restaurant manager came and gave him a “lolly” (lollipop). Seve leaned over and whispered to me, “Do you think if I start crying then I’ll get a lolly?” She didn’t try it, but my guess is yes.
This morning I went to the Nottingham Museum of Life which has a section of caves. Nottingham has more caves than any other place in England. They are all manmade and carved out of the sandstone. During World War II, the caves were used as air raid shelters. There was a short air raid simulation that I got on the flip; to be fair, it’s really not all that interesting. However, here it is!
The museum is near the Castle and Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem. Back in the days of the Crusades, a “trip” was a break in a journey, not the journey itself. The pub/restaurant/inn was where soldiers on the crusades would stop – a break in their journey to Jerusalem. Over the bar on the second floor is an old model of a Spanish galleon (spelled correctly? I don’t know, but thanks to Harry Potter, until we actually went in, we thought the galleon meant a coin). It is enclosed in a glass case and the ship is dripping with dirt and cobwebs, because legend is that the ship is cursed. The three people who tried to clean it throughout history all died soon after of mysterious deaths.
On Sunday, we went to Sherwood Forest. It was once 10,000 acres, but is now only 450. Near the inevitable tourist shop was the Great Oak that weighs over 23 tons, though I’m not quite sure how that’s determined. The branches span over 90 feet, and some of the lower ones are propped up by metal supports. I’m not quite sure if that’s “fair” but the tree is over 1000 years old. I guess if I was over 1000, I’d like someone to help prop me up as well.