|Our room in St Albans|
Last Saturday, after The Tigers' sterling efforts at Wembley, Shirley, Ian and I made our way back into central London. We had a drink in a bar just off Leicester Square where we met with a delightful young lady called Danielle. Ian has been "dating" her as Americans are wont to say. I don't know what she will have made of our football shirts. Then we strolled into Chinatown for an evening meal in a pleasantly basic restaurant that Ian has visited several times. No airs and graces just wholesome Chinese food delivered with the same efficiency you will find in Hong Kong or Chinatown Bangkok.
Thence to St Pancras and a late train back to St Albans which is half an hour north of London. In the Quality Hotel on London Road we managed to catch the last half hour of ITV's evening review of the FA Cup Final before descending to the cellars of sleep..."And it's Pudding. Yorkshire Pudding! He's only got Fabianski - the Arsenal goalie to beat! He's round him and yes! Yes! He has smashed it! What a marvellous goal! Pudding has won it for The Tigers!"
Breakfast was truly scrumptious - accompanied by the humming music of a Romanian cleaner who insisted on vacuuming the dining room carpet while guests were still eating. How thoughtful of her to bring this Romanian morning tradition to our shores.
We headed for the centre of St Albans where a service was still in progress in the historical city's magnificent Norman cathedral. We strolled around it and visited the shrine of St Alban. He was the first British Christian martyr, and was possibly beheaded in AD 308 by Roman governor Maximian on the orders of Emperor Diocletian, who denounced Christianity and had ordered the deaths of all subjects and allies of the Roman Empire who refused to give up the faith. Legend has it that Alban's shrine and therefore the great cathedral were built on the very spot where the saint died.
|The shrine of St Alban|
|Medieval mural on Norman architecture|
The outer fabric of the cathedral contains much flint, brick and other material taken from the Roman city of Verulamium which was once situated in the river valley close by. And that important Roman settlement was preceded by yet more ancient settlements going back through the Celtic period. St Albans is a very old place, so rich in history and Shirley and I were charmed by it.
We ambled around the lake where coots and Canada geese were tending their young. The grassy shores of Verulamium Lake were snowy with daisies. I have never seen so many in one place. Only thirty minutes from central London and seen on a hot May morning - St Albans seemed like such a great place to live. We had refreshing drinks in "The Goat Inn" where we dipped into Sunday papers before travelling on to Redbournbury Watermill.
Another ancient place. A mill has existed at Redbournbury for a thousand years. We bought cornbread, teacakes and a bag of wholemeal flour - ground in that very building. And I saw a grey wagtail sitting on a fence. Then it was back in the car and up the M1 to The Promised Land - Yorkshire - singing along to the "Sound of the Seventies" show on Radio Two:-
Long may you run.
Long may you run.
Although these changes
With your chrome heart shining
In the sun
Long may you run.
Sounds like you had a pleasant trip anyway, match result notwithstanding, YP.ReplyDelete
We were both feeling a bit blue on Sunday morning so St Albans had a healing effect.Delete
Who needs overseas travel when you have England at your fingertips?always somewhere interesting to go and something ancient to see.ReplyDelete
That's true Helen and I forgive you for visiting Italy and Gay Paris (French pronunciation) this year!Delete
Ha! Ha ! Did you see Lee didn't get the Perry Como joke. Obviously not all Aussies have a sense of humour !Delete
I'm glad you don't take it too seriously and make a weekend out of it. Why did they only start kicking at five. Even Formula 1 and MotoGP start at a sensible time of two.ReplyDelete
Still a pity you lost but that is sport.
The 5pm kick off was down to the rulers of football - TV moguls who didn't give a bugger that most Hull City fans would have been getting home at two in the morning. B*******S!Delete
Then the rulers of football need one up them. A fence post covered in rusty barbed wire up them.Delete
The thought of that makes me clench my buttocks!Delete
It's the same here, TV rights rule and it doesn't matter if games are on at times that mean families can no longer attend. The game will suffer in the end.Delete
Despite the inconsiderate late start, it was a glorious weekend and just right for a small break. I love the picture of the Wagtail.ReplyDelete
i had to go on the RSPB site to use their clever indicator in order to determine what type of bird it was.Delete
The daisy-covered shore of the lake is truly amazing - I've never seen so many in one place, either.ReplyDelete
St. Albans certainly looks a good place to visit as well as to live in, and the mill with all its history is fascinating, too.
And now to something completely different: While typing the few lines of this comment, I have had to stop every five words or so because I just could not stop sneezing. Must be all that pollen from the fields I walked past on my way home today.
It could be that Miss Arian or maybe you re turning into a human hurricane - Hurricane Meike - causing devastation wherever she goes.Delete
Glad to see you got over the disappointment relatively quickly and perhaps there are things more important in life than football - Shankley was wrong.ReplyDelete
Having said that, well done Hull! I didn't see the match - got 8 million free channels here, but if you want to see anything everybody wants to see (i.e. football), you have to pay.
You missed the best FA Cup Final in years Brian. We took Arsenal right to the wire.Delete