January 18, 2011

0 More Brimham Rocks

 If you don't like Sloan, you probably shouldn't read this post.  Actually, if you don't like Sloan, you probably shouldn't read this blog, or ever tell Paul or me, cause we might hate you.  She's our Pie.  Like I mentioned before, Brimham Rocks is Sloan's most favorite place on earth.  Or at least in the three countries she's been in so far.   She and I go there frequently, and I decided to take advantage of the brilliant sunny (but still very cold!) days we were having and take my camera along.   So... enjoy. 

 Here she's demonstrating the safe way to climb a rock- pulling up with your forepaws is much safer than just jumping blindly into/over things...

This one's shaped just like Sloan's head!! Actually, I think this one is called "Dancing Bear".  But we all know it's really nature's sculpture of Sloan!

 I'm sure this one has a name, but all I can think of when I see it is Deep Thought, the computer from Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (the 2005 film; the book only has pictures in my imagination).
Nidderdale view.  So amazing! Even Sloan takes a moment to appreciate it! (or to just contemplate her next jump!)

 Showing how to properly navigate the heather trails- full speed ahead!

Just in case you didn't believe that it was quite cold, these leaves and ferns were quite frosted- it did make me crave sugar cookies, though!

 Sloan loves Brimham Rocks- and when you visit, she'll be happy to show you around- if you can keep up!!

January 11, 2011

0 York Minster

I've walked around the Minster several times, and into the vestibule twice, but this was the first time I've gone in the Minster. Before we get there in our pictorial you'll have to scroll through some outside shots.

What we see as the Minster was built between the 13th and 15th centuries, although it has been restored from two major fires in the 1800s and it's own settling weight in more recent times.

The Minster is constantly under close scrutiny to maintain it's structure and beauty.  There is a display inside showing how the building's stones are carefully and delicately recreated in order to seamlessly replace crumbling pieces, but the York Minster Revealed project describes this as well.   The stained glass windows are also being cared for in the same fashion, along with being restored to their original designs by removing lead repairs from previous centuries.

Constantine sits at the entrance as the bringer of Christianity to the West.

Moving inside, this is the quire screen.  Built to separate the shriven from the lay people, the original screen was destroyed in the fire of 1829, but was recreated from drawings during the next decade. 

I'll apologize for the poor lighting and sometimes camera shake, I don't use my flash inside because of the risk of damage to non-stone relics.  If you look closely you can see the individual seats for the canons, each of which has a badge showing the canon's prebend.

The most (arguably, of course!) famous part of the quire screen is the King's Screen, surrounding the western entrance to the quire.  Flanking the entry are fifteen carved kings, William the Conqueror to Henry VI.   These were carved in the early 1400s as part of what is believed to be a support wall between the two eastern arches of the tower (the tower collapsed in 1407).

You'll notice (maybe, if you look closely) that Henry VI (the guy on the farthest right) doesn't have the same gape-mouthed, mad-scientist hair look as the other kings.  This is due to this particular Henry's being carved in 1810.  Why so much later than the others?  According to the story, the previous Henry VI statues were all destroyed or removed by local Yorkshire folk, since Henry's disastrous reign led to the War of the Roses between the Lancastrians (Henry VI's side) and the House of York.

I'm honestly not sure who's effigy this is, but I thought it both presumptuous and entertaining that he's got his feet resting on the lion.  Plus this lion looks a lot like the talking lion from a show I like, Wonderfalls.

Back to the Minster... this is a view down the Nave, from the tower area.

I'm quite infatuated with stained glass, so of course I paid extra attention to the windows.  I'm curious to the faint drawings in the "clear" areas of some of the windows.  This image shows them best, if you care to click it larger.

I'll take more pictures the next time we go, but if you're interested in the religious houses this is definitely one to see.  I will suggest, though, that before you come visit you read Pillars of the Earth, by Ken Follett.  A historical fiction book (and a doozy of a volume it is), it provides immense background information on the actual architecture and construction of a cathedral.   It's a great read, too.  I was fortunate to discover it before we started seeing the religious ruins and cathedrals, and I feel it gave me some insight to what I'm viewing.  "But you don't have to take MY word for it!"  (gold star if you get that reference!!)

0 York, Various Bits and Pieces

One of the "of course" places we take visitors is York- the city offers so much, from history, to great shops, to great food.   So... of course! I took my sister and her family over. 

The park and ride we use drops off right in the center of what's good, which happens to be right in front of the ruins of St. Leonard's Hospital.  I'm currently reading a series of books set in medieval York, The Owen Archer Series, and one of the early books is set in St. Leonard's, so I was excited to make the connection.

If we ever do build a house, you can bet these arches are going in!! I love them!

Part of the old city wall, right behind St. Leonard's.

This is St. Wilfrid's Catholic Church.  I don't know much about it, it's pretty, it's got a great doorway (another must feature in my pretend house- this is why we just need to live in some renovated abbey ruins!!).

St. Wilfrid?

Or maybe this is?

I'm guessing this is High Petergate, as that's the name of the street.  An old gateway from the city wall and the shops nearby.

In the Dean's Garden, behind the Minster.  I really liked the gargoyle faces!

Also in the Dean's Garden.  I'm not sure what it is, maybe a war memorial, from something I read online.

We walked over Ouse Bridge (over River Ouse...) and I really liked this dusky shot.

The river flooded onto the sidewalks- but apparently it gets worse.

January 6, 2011

0 Scarborough (seeing a pattern of where you might go when you visit??)

 My sister, Rebekah, her husband, and their two daughters came to visit this January.  Of course, I took them to Scarborough!!  While they explored the castle, Sloan, Max, and I enjoyed the cliff-top view over the North Sea.   As usual for our visits, it was cold, overcast, and windy.

I caught this rainbow ending right by the shoreline- and all this time I thought all rainbows ended in Ireland!!

A view of the castle from the cliff edge.

 I do like a good harbor.

Brent and Rebekah were picking up fish and chips from one of the harbor chippys while I got the car.  While I was waiting I stepped out to photograph these crab catching cages.  

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