Newport 1 - Caerleon , in search of the ampitheatre and a night stop/boy racers showing off so we moved on


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August 16th 2020
Published: August 17th 2020
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Ok we are off to Caerleon . Our camper stop book tells us that there is a good night stop in the town so off we set . The drive back over the Severn was not the most brilliant . The rain picked up and splattered Gabbys windscreen . The metronomic rhythym of the wipers broke the silence . We had not expected to be driving even more miles today. More miles of stop and start . Things had not improved going the opposite direction . Nor had the lateness of the day improved it by one jot . We did though eventually get to the Severn crossing . The new bridge named after the Prince of Wales . An iconic bridge with a bit of a history . No-one particularly wanted it named after an English prince who Ok went to university at Aberystwyth and did learn a bit of welsh but lives in England for most of his time and holidays in Scotland and Norfolk . A prince who does have a holiday home in Wales and pops over the border a few weeks a year to say hello to his subjects .

This was the first time we had been over the bridge since the tolls were abolished . The Severn looked grey . The mud flats muddy . The Celtic Manor which housed golf tournaments and G7 conferences looked a bit forlorn. We were heading for the parking area recommended on Camperstop opposite the ampitheatre in Caerleon . " Amphitheatre Amphitheatre that sounds Roman to me " shouted our quiet little friend in the back. Can he be quiet ? No definately not . Anything roman is bound to wake him up . He is always in search of things Roman and he and his best friend Woolly always try to hunt out Hadrian . I dont think he was going to find anything to do with Hadrian here . Hadrian was up north .

Caerleon looked a nice little place . Could we live here we wondered ? It looked pretty . There was infrastructure and life . It certainly has a lot of history . The romans were here , Arthurian legend is talked about .

We parked up . Next to the rugby pitch with views over the amphitheatre which was open . Some young girls arrived and went behind the club . Boys arrived and followed . Could be interesting we thought . Due to Covid the museum was closed but the rest of the area was free to enter any time day or night . Plenty of parking but why were there no other motorhomers here on such a good spot? Away from town. Away from people not harming anyone . A few cars came in and parked up . The occupants whisked off in another car . We wondered why . Drug dealers . Pimps . Our minds were on overdrive . Some walkers braved the damp. An old farmhouse looked empty and rather forlorn . The smell of pigs or manure permeated the air . We walked over to the site . Don't think Coliseum in Rome or even amphitheatre in Chester. This one has been stripped of its stone but the circle and shape remain . You need a drone to see it properly or go up in an hot air balloon .

We walked across the field and into the circle . It was impressive even with so little remaining . A young girl sat around one edge with her mum and Billy the dog . Billy barked and barked at us and wouldnt stop running towards us despite her cries for Billy to come back . Apart from her and her mum and Billy we had the place to ourselves.

Sion of course took up the narrative as sadly there were no information boards .Who needs a board when you are with a well read sheep " It was built in 74 AD and was called Isca ." " It was built to subdue the Silurians" he said . " Ha Ha now that is how Usk become called Usk after Isca "

We set out to walk around the perimetre . It really was an interesting place . " 60, 000 people could be seated here " shouted the sheep. He told us that he would have liked to have sat there and watched the lions eating the audience . I had to gently explain that perhaps there were no high walls so there would not be wild animals . If there was a disappointment it was the litter . In a quiet corner where there probably once had been a shrine was the evidence of a party . Cans left everywhere . Why cannot the young take their cans home ? Has their mother not told them that it is not right to leave litter ? Dont they teach them at school about littering ? It was a mess .

We walked back up to Gabby and started to settle in for the night . However the boy races appeared . They drove in in their fast cars . How can they afford such cars ? They drove loudly to the end of the car park , swung round and then drove out again . Some stayed behind talking with the boom boom of their radios starting to irritate us . Having had a bad day it did not take much to upset us. We wouldnt get this in a nice aire in France would we ? We made the decision for the second time that night to pack up and head off to see where we could park up for the night .

Knackered - there was no other word for it we arrived at Tintern . We ended up joining a group of 6 motorhomes parked up already on the large car park next to the abbey . We should not have parked there but we herded with the rest of them and hoped that by morning no-one would notice us . We slept well even though it rained and we were expecting a knock on the door or a fine attached to the window . We left early before anyone else arrived . We left no sign we had been . We take our litter away. We are quiet . But why oh why cannot our small country be like Europe when it comes to us motorhomers . Why were we feeling so unwelcome ?

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17th August 2020

Caerleon
Glad you were impressed by the Amphitheatre/ I hope you saw the Barracks opposite? It is such a shame the Roman Baths and Museum are shut as they are the best parts!! Shame about the Boy Racers? I wonder if they raced around because there was a campervan there and they had an audience or whether they would race around anyway? Yes the UK feels very small with everyone who lives in UK travelling around. I reckon it will take us forever to get to Plymouth!!
13th September 2020

Jersey
Well you got away then. Just been reading all about the beaches or lack of them and the tides . Sounds like you packed a lot in . The Covid test sounds awful . A colleague at work was picked at random some months ago and asked if she would do a test . She agreed but wished she had not . She said it made her gag and felt like she was pulling her brains out with the cotton wool bud. Our trip to Northumberland and Scotland cut short . Sold house /lost buyer /came back for another viewer . She loves it and she is bringing her husband tomorrow for a second viewing . We are hoping for the best . Trying to plan a Christmas break but sure that Boris will cock it up again . What a palaver . Glad to hear you have joined the ranks of pensioner . LOL . I cannot believe that I got there years ago and got my pension at 61 years and 10 months . The government really did make a mess of it when you look at how long it has taken you to get there . I thought my wait was bad enough . We have had a few strange weeks . My mums brother died (the last one left ) about two months ago , his wife (second one ) died two weeks after him. My cousin died same time (he was in his 70's) . My husbands Auntie died two weeks ago - she was 102 - . She died of ..............wait for it ------------------no not Covid -........old age !!!!!!! A security guard at work aged 33 committed suicide and an ex colleague dropped dead a few days ago . Feels like I am being stalked by the grim reaper !!!!!!!!!!!! Bloody hell I need a holiday !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Loved the blog - seems like you have our problem places shut on a Monday .

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