(I don’t know whether grammar is correct there) but you should guess from the title that I was away on a trip last week. I found it bizarre because I didn’t once reach out and catch hold of a steep bit of rock. It was castles, steam trains and art galleries all the way.
The best bit of the trip was the visit to the New Art Gallery Walsall
which houses the; Ryan Epstein collection. Lots and lots of lovely things. I found the display of small figurines from a range of historical periods and countries particularly interesting. They gave Epstein’s work a context that is usually missing when you see his own works in galleries.
I was also very taken with he building itself. It would be just the thing for a not so secret lair; plenty of potential for grand entrances and running up and down Dr Who stylee. Unfortunately I couldn’t fit the thing in my pocket.
Other buildings people wanted to bring back to London were Harlech Castle
(bijou, huge refurbishment potential, off street parking), and Plas Mawr
, Conwy. The later is a well preserved upscale elizabethan town house – double reception room, many original features, no running water…
The crocodile of the title can be found at the foot of the steps just past Llandudno pier on Marine Drive. Fossils of some kind of sea creatures preserved in the limestone.
Cut one way they look like polos…
… or the other a set of dubious dentures
There were a range of pebbles on the beach including this one made of cinder toffee and ice-cream.
While were were on Anglesey finishing off Edward’s set of castles we stopped off at Oriel Ynys Mons
. I liked the Tunnicliffe scraper board illustrations, but wan’t particularly keen on Kyffin Williams heavy handed outlining, and of course there were no postcards of the pieces I did like.
We took the train back from south Snowdonia one afternoon. the Ffestiniog Railway
gave good views of Yr Wyddfa
despite the summit pyramid being swathed in cloud. I was all ready to talk about lilies, volcanos and Victorian Fern hunters but no one was interested. Traveling on the refurbished carriages on the steam railway made me think of what little I know about the Burma Railway.
There were a number of narrow cutting though solid rock and slender embankments on the 13 miles of narrow gauge track. The railway was built over decades to carry the slate from the quarries down to the sea. How else are all those urban terraces going to get roofed?
Over all the trip brought home how shite most people’s life was in the past, whether it was mining slate in a town the National Park still carefully skirts or sleeping on the floor in a stone cubby somewhere in the bowels of Forward Operating base Conwy. Only a few people in the population has the wherewith all to spend their surplus income on shiny things.
Now we can take off on holidays when the mood takes us and happily complain about process potato products being served at every single meal at the hotel.
I was hoping to do more sketching while away as the mountains light up my heart. But there was hardly any time what with the rushing from place to place looking at things. in fact it was exhausting. Some things have percolated through my brain though and now I have recovered from my post trip head ache I may actually get pen to paper.
… and here’s a bonus bit of sunset over the Little Orme
no wonder there was no feed back from this post as I failed to publish it…