Happily Ever After
Life in The Rural Retreat with a beautiful wife, three cats, garden wildlife, a camera, a computer – and increasing amounts about running
Roaming With The Romans
by admin - 18:56 on 23 October 2011
Our day's Northumbrian adventure centred on its Roman past: specifically, Hadrian's Wall.
Matchgirl was keen to play at legionaries and stride around in the bracing (ie perishing) wind that swirls around the wall's remains, built rather thoughtlessly (for wimpy tourists) on top of hills, so after a look at Birdoswald Fort's visitor centre we motored to Steel Rigg, the destination my directionally challenged spouse had sought in the first place.
Glorious three-mile walks could be made in every location, she told me. Unfortunately for her, many other trippers had this information and paths through the middle of nowhere were mobbed by Berghaus and North Face-clad masses. Deterred by the heaving humanity (the start of English school holidays may be partly responsible) we went to Housesteads instead – equally busy but in a less concentrated area.
This has the most fort remains and the longest stretch of wall, and even at three feet high, rather than the original fifteen, is worth seeing. Soldiers posted from more Mediterranean climates to build it might have felt differently.
A walk was taken – beside the wall, rather than on it, in deference to signs (mostly ignored) that requested trippers to think of conservation and not climb it – but the wind drove us back after a while. Definitely a place to return to, though.
We finished our day out in a Corbridge teashop, which is compulsory when on holiday: tea and cake must be taken at every opportunity.
Back at Dilston Mill, a damper was put on the day by the discovery of a dead cat at the top of the drive. Mrs Landlady had told us yesterday of the disappearance of her twenty-year-old pet, so this seemed too much of a coincidence. We learned later that it was indeed the missing moggy. Sic transit gloria mundi, as the Romans might have said.
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