Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Oh, the grand ole' Duke of York...yadayadayada...

So we have been in Yorkshire now for well over a week, fallen totally in love with it and had yet to see the main city...until today!
Had a bit of a lazy morning. Got our run in a little later than usual and ate breakfast. We decided today was the day to see the big city of York. It was only a 30 minute drive which was nice considering that a lot of our day trips have involved a lengthy drive to and from. We got to York and found a nice little city that was bustling but not crazy. We walked all over, enjoying the urban centre with lots of shops and cafes. The kids found a toy store to spend some of their £ in and we bought a few souvenirs too.

There were street performers playing instruments and singing along the way but one particular busker really caught our eye. As we approached we noticed a statue of a man riding a bicycle. On the front of the bike was a basket with a dog in it. The statue was completely purple and was standing right in the middle of the walkway. We got closer and noticed something strange about the statue. There was a donation bucket at the foot of the statue so we gave Noah a few coins to drop in. As he did the statue turned his head and said "Thank you." Noah's face was priceless. He stared at the purple man on the purple bike with the purple dog, utterly speechless. The man then asked Noah if he could try out Noah's new toy gun. Noah handed the toy to the "statue" and posed with Eden for a few pictures. This guy was really funny and got Noah laughing and playing. It was really cool. Then suddenly he stopped moving again and resumed his statue act for the next person to come along with some spare change.

We wandered our way to the York Cathedral which is absolutely stunning. An ancient church in the middle of the city.

As we entered the main doors I was struck by the beauty of the stained glass panels.

They were enormous and very unusual. There were also several tombs of the Archbishop of York that dated back as far as 1126. This was one old church!

We left the church, stopped in at the nearest pub for lunch and a pint and continued our walking tour of the city. We strolled over to York Castle and had a 99 (an ice cream cone with a Flake chocolate stuck in it - SO GOOD!).

We had walked for several hours and were feeling pretty tired so we walked back to the car along the Ouse River. Lovely.

Tonight we walked two doors down to the Malt Shovel, the only business in our little village. We had a quick drink and a starter before heading back to the cottage for dinner. The Malt Shovel is a really nice spot with great owners that smoke their own fish for the home cooked meals they serve in the restaurant. Matt tried their specialty, the Malt Shovel Smokie, a dish made with smoked haddock in a whiskey, cheese sauce. It was divine! We have been trying to figure out how to reproduce it at home. I had the French onion soup which was also really nice. They were especially kind to the kids, whipping up a little order of chips for them to snack on while the grown-ups enjoyed our drinks and appetizers.
It seems like the days have just slipped away on us. Already tomorrow is our last day here in Yorkshire. Friday we move on to London and from there I just know the week is going to fly. So much planned for those days including visiting with some family I haven't seen in years. I am so excited to get there but I will be very sad to say goodbye to this amazing part of the world. I can promise you, we will be coming back to northern England.
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  1. ....the picture of Noah and Eden praying is SO cute!

  2. I showed the picture of the praying sweet children (stand-ins obv) to Barry and we agreed your Grandmother would have loved this ....