Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Sandwich, Castles and more Gumtree joy.

There is a town called Sandwich. Not very delicious, but at least it won't make me sick. Beautiful with old quaint streets and Tudor style overhanging buildings. Went to Deal and then Walmer castles. Both built at the same time, in an amazingly short time. Only one year to build a castle. It would take Tower Hamlets one year to build a bus stop. Henry 8th was panicking that the Catholics would attack him, considering he'd just screwed them big time, so he needed new defences. There were originally 3 castles, but the third got eaten by the sea. Bad sea. Deal castle when viewed from the air looks like a Tudor rose, all walls are curved to better deflect attack. There are a ridiculous amount of holes for gun fire. I didn't know they had guns then. My history has gaps in it, and if it wasn't for the castles, I wouldn't care. The tunnels running underneath were the scariest I've walked around so far. In part it was being alone, part narrow, part flooding and part crazed pigeons. I had my torch on the whole time, turning around every few steps like a scared 5 year old. And in some sections I ran. Yes, I ran. Walmer Castle had potential, but alas was destroyed as some high-born idiot decided to live there, and turn a perfectly good castle into some half breed mansion mash-up. Imagine a castle with painted walls and in place of the defensive ditches there were 'gardens'. Pfft. Good thing that was free with my EH membership. Saw the chair that the Duke of Wellington died on, and according to the [irritating] audio guide, they've never changed the fabric since. How special. Only thing worth visiting for is an awesome chest of drawers. Seriously it was awesome. And huge.

Ring ring goes the Gumtree phone. 'Where are you in London?' Not  a good start. 'I want to meet you for coffee'. Foolishly, I asked why. Apparently he'd like to 'get to know me'. I said no, then goodbye and thought that was it. Boom - text message. 'Why u put advrt' Obviously, I decided not to reply. Not subtle enough, as 5 minutes later, ring ring goes the phone. Now, I was peacefully hijacking WiFi in Mc D's, so the cleaner was a little shocked at the quiet woman in the corner suddenly cussing. There were no small humans, so swearing was allowed, and used. Needless to say, he hasn't called again.

Finally made it to Dover! Arrived sometime late in the evening, so parked at the White Cliffs for a few hours to pass the time. Watched the ferries come in and out of the harbour and was offered some watermelon by 4 shisha-smoking-Arabs. I declined, mainly because they cut it on grass and I've no idea where the knife came from. Could've been my new best friends, but they were ugly. I'm not shallow, but my vision was offended. The next morning I approached the castle. And was early. Saw some confused tourists, who couldn't understand that castles have opening times. Peasants must wait! I offered to drive them 10 minutes to the white cliffs, and they were very grateful. My generous act of the day. Felt good too. Back down to the castle and in I went. It was the biggest castle so far, and surprisingly the most disappointing. Most of the inside was 'furnished' and that detracted from the building. 8 million stairs surrounded by hordes of uncontrollable small people, zillions of French tourists and so many cameras flashing, they need an epileptic warning. All I can say from that time is that the furniture was garish and with all the walking I had to do, it should be sponsored by weight watchers. Went down the [disappointing] mediaeval tunnels, and was surprised to see they were made from bricks. The same bricks we use in modern houses. Again, my history is confused. Final note - don't bother.

Saw my first Dani [Muslim] in Dover. Driving a Nissan Micra - the stereotypes follow them everywhere. Those and Volvos must be very good cars, as Bangladeshi people and the Jewish don't like wasting money.

One thing I'll say about the countryside, is that there are a ridiculously large amount of single track roads. That would never work in London, as no arrogant bastard would pull over or reverse for anyone else. Probably lead to a reduction of cars on the road, as every other person would get stabbed after waiting an hour to get past.


  1. There are so many politically incorrect statements, I nearly choked on my diet coke!

    I have just started reading the Tudor books by Phillipa Gregory - they are AMAZING!

    Also can't you take down the Gumtree ad?


  2. I was never on for subtlety, and it's not that bad...for me. It's a new, different advert, with a 'no dating' disclaimer. If his reading English is as bad as his spoken, he saw the word female and that was enough.

  3. I know there is a mistake Yellow! Calm down, it'll be ok x

  4. You sure do have a love of castles! We don't have a castle, but we do have a beautiful cathedral you could visit. I appreciate that they are not the same, but both have interesting masonry and history. (I tend to ignore any of the religious gubbins)

    We have sauce too - come and visit.