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Published: August 17th 2020
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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