Durham


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June 30th 2022
Published: July 1st 2022
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VindolandaVindolandaVindolanda

This fort and the adjacent town precedes the building of Hadrian's Wall by forty years, thus constructed during AD 120's. We see an active archeological dig with folks scrapping bits of earth unearthing more artifacts.
Before we begin the next entry must apologize for being remis as no mention of a wonderful, and quite long, conversation with a couple of Scots eating at a table next to us in Keswick. They were retired folks hiking about the area who had luggage sent from one town to the next as traversed the area. And what an enjoyable pair. We actually solved the world's problems, until one injected "no one listens to us"; yeah, forgot that part. They titled Boris Johnson a "mini-trump". Perhaps, but a bit hard to believe. Spoke of the possible additional vote of Scotland exiting the UK (lunacy, they say), and what will become of Northern Ireland. Repeatedly they wondered "what is it about American's and their guns". We couldn't offer a cogent response, can anyone else? They have been been to the U.S. more than once visiting several of our best sights. We love chatting with folks here, and so would you.

Drive from Keswick to Durham via Vindolanda and another Costco was rather pleasant. Only a few drops here and there not affecting our activities. Vindolanda was a Roman fort and adjacent town built 40 years before Hadrian ordered his wall
Hadrian's GuesthouseHadrian's GuesthouseHadrian's Guesthouse

Hadrian was perhaps the first world traveler. He spent the better part of his reign inspecting areas of his empire and ordering alterations. In Britannia, his wall was one. He likely stayed at this spot several days inspecting the building progress. We may add, in marked contrast to his processor Trajan, he concluded "the age of conquest is over" and built static fortifications.
erected. After Hadrian's Wall was completed it seems the fort was largely abandoned by the military but civilian activity continued. The Wall and the Roman baths at Bath, we think, are the premier Roman remains in Britain. People spend many days just "walking the wall".

Accommodations in Durham and Keswick have both been B&B's; Keswick was wonderful, the breakfast amazing, but the room a tad tight; at Durham, although a bit from the Cathedral, was almost twice as large. We'll take the distance and larger room. BTW, Bird informs me our Durham B&B was constructed during Britain's heydays circa 1840. The Cathedral, at least from the outside, was majestic. No entry was permitted as the University was graduating students there for two weeks. They would not allow us even close enough to the castle for a picture. Oh well.

Tomorrow we are on to York for a few days then a couple at Cambridge before winging over the Irish Sea to Dublin for our last eighteen days in Ireland before hopping back across the pond. We have a real treat in store for you in Dublin. Stay tuned for details.


Additional photos below
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LatrineLatrine
Latrine

Upon visiting a Roman city or fort Bird invariably makes a birdline for the latrine. Some incompetent photographer snapped this picture, but what we have is space for sixteen legionnaires. They sat on wooden slats on each side (top and bottom) and at the back (left). "Things" flowed right to left. HP offered he wished not to sit at the left end.
JewelryJewelry
Jewelry

Romans were concerned with appearance. To ambitious folks during the Republic and early empire status was very important, really late empire as well, but these folks were really no longer Roman. Here are many examples of rings, bracelets and necklaces.
WigWig
Wig

Didn't we say appearance was important. See a Roman wig from the second century along with many combs and hair accessories.
LetterLetter
Letter

Paper being a bit later invention, Romans often wrote on wood. This is one high status woman inviting another to dinner in the second century. The reason we have many of these items, including the wig, is they were discarded in bogs, which being anaerobic, preserved organic material. Thank you oxygen free environments.
Durham CathedralDurham Cathedral
Durham Cathedral

The central and front area are depicted. Look to the bottom right to spot the reason for our exclusion from inside. Folks are filing in for graduation and lines are quite long. There are a number of schools at the University with graduations occurring every two hours times four a day for two weeks. Lot of folks for sure.
Elvet BridgeElvet Bridge
Elvet Bridge

A rather impressive bridge constructed in the 12th century. The Dark Ages were not all dark.


3rd July 2022

Wonderful adventure
Dear Bird and Pop, Thank you for taking us on this vacation with you. I am enjoying the posts and pictures. Continued safe travels and hope to see you soon when you return. All the best, Gina
13th July 2022
Durham Cathedral

Bridge
Beautiful bridge! Were you describing a large "outhouse"? Wonder what the most popular major is at Durham? Boris is gone or soon will be.

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