The journey begins.It now seems an age since I was in Adelaide. I had a good flight, even managing some sleep as well as watching a couple of movies. One of the movies was Hill 60, which seems very approriate as in about 8 days I will be walking past there. This is the site where the Australian Tunnelers dug 90 metres underground, actually below the water level, and blasted a huge crater in the ground as part of the offensive on the western front. |Many of the men were in this unit because of their mining background - one of them was from Broken Hill - good training there! At the time the blast was the largest blast ever and could be heard in London and Dublin. Enough of the History lesson.
Yesterday I met Pauline and we spent the day wandering around London. I met her at the crypt in St Pauls which I really like it is such a lovely space, and even though there were quite a few tourists wandering through it was realtively quiet. We then went to Southwark Cathedral and had a good browse around all the historic tombstones etc there. There are a couple of beautiful stained glass windows and a lovely reclining bronze of the bard himself . Shakepseare had a bit to do with the cathedral, which is just around the corner from the Globe theatre, and his brother was buried there. After a leisurely lunch and a hike back to the room I am staying in we stook the tube to Marylebone for a coffee in a coffee shop above an antique market (and I didn't even contemplate buying a thing!). When Pauling caught her train home I then meandered through Regent's Park, and back home. I had managed to stay awajke all day thanks to the company of Pualine and the fresh air .
Today I went to chuch at the Methodist Hall. ;I am getting plenty of walking in even though I have yet to formally start my pilgimage, as it took me an hour and a half to get there. I guessed correctly too - thay were all singable hyms, and well sung. It was like old times I imagine the whole congregation sang in harmony - but instead of being of Welsh and Cornish backgrounds they were many were of African origins, the women beuatifully dressed, and in many cases in a traditional style.
I was taken up onto the 4th floor of the building and out onto the baclony where I got a splendid view of the Abbey and the clock tower of Paliament house. Some useless information for you:- the basement of the building was the largest air raid shelter in the war, hodling over 2,000 peopl. The organ has over 4,000 pipes (can that be right?). The dome on the top of the building is the second largest dome (I think my guide said in the world, but I am not sure about the domes in Florence and in Rome - I will have to check that one out!) - perhaps he meant England.
Tomorrow is the day! The start of around a 2,2000 km trek! The forecast is for rain and it is quite cold. Indeed I have had my 2 jumpers on for some of the day. I will pack my poncho on the top if per chance I don't start walking in it!