Wednesday, August 10, 2005

On the road to Lincoln

Located a very large windmill north of Boston, but it was closed and being repainted with pitch/tar, so that was a non-event for the morning. Driving out of Lincolnshire's very flat Fens, up into the Wolds we stopped for Bolingbroke Castle - or at least the remnants thereof - birthplace of Henry IV.

We still got into Lincoln before lunch and I was pleased to see that our B&B was only 5 minutes walk from the Cathedral, in the attractive Bailgate precinct.

The actual Cathedral interior was not available to be seen in its best light, with scaffolding quite widespread. Some of this scaffolding formed interior sets for the imminent filming of scenes from the upcoming "Da Vinci Code" with Tom Hanks et al. The building apparently costs £50000/week to maintain, so I imagine they are getting a good kickback from the film production. They probably have a nice little earner with the Lincoln Cathedral Chips (crisps) available in the store. I didn't check to see if they had any trans-substantive properties or were embossed with scriptural verses.

A sidebar on chips. Eating out in the UK one notices that menu side-dishes will offer something like:
* Chips * Rice
* New Potatoes * Vegetables
* Crisps * Potato Mash of these things is not like the others.

Even if your main dish is Sausages + Mash, you will probably be provided a secondary form of potato as accompaniment. I was in one of Lincoln's better eateries for lunch, when a family of four came in looking for a table. Their only proviso was: "Do you do chips?".

Found an well-priced (for me) true first edition copy of one of my favourite books, James Thurber's The 13 Clocks, illustrated by Marc Simont (misspelled as Mark in this first printing). I vastly prefer the illustrations of the later UK edition, done by Ronald Searle, which truly complement Thurber's whimsy as those he did with the slightly later Molesworth books of Geoffrey Willans. A splendid parody of Harry Potter, written in the stile of Molesworth chiz chiz ect is at

BTW there are also multiple recorded tellings of The 13 Clocks by Lauren Bacall, Peter Ustinov, and Edward Woodward.
"Not so fast," the Golux said. "Half the places I have been to, never were. I make things up. Half the things I say are there cannot be found. When I was young I told a tale of buried gold, and men from leagues around dug in the woods. I dug myself."
Sat at a bus-stop bench for a while until check-in time at the B&B. An old lady gave me a detailed account of the plot of the Disney kiddy flick "Snow Dogs".

Finished reading "Sixty Million Frenchmen..." over dinner. Got so absorbed in it that I started thinking I was actually in a restaurant in France.
Lincoln Cathedral was the tallest building in the world for about 250 years, the first to surpass the Great Pyramid of Giza.

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