Day 209 York, UK

With another day in York ahead of us, we packed a picnic and set off along the river to walk into town.  The National Rail Museum was our destination with the largest collection of trains and memorabilia in the world; and it’s a free museum.  As we walked along the river we spotted geese heading south; rowers and canal boats.  At the museum we grabbed our map and set off in opposite directions with a kid each to check out the sights.  We met up again at the Learning Platform to see the first of 2 science shows. 

The first show was all about Newton’s Laws of Movement.  Harris was chosen as a volunteer.

We ate our picnic lunch sitting on a bench on a platform as if waiting for a train; we were waiting for the next science show.  This show was called the Eggsellent Science Show and featured eggs, obviously.  Harris was chosen again as a volunteer but relinquished his position to his brother Patrick; I would like to say willingly but it wasn’t really!  Patrick got the wonderful job of placing 1 kg bags of sugar onto a tray that was supported by 4 raw eggs.  Amazingly 12 bags of sugar were held up on the tray by the 4 eggs before they cracked.  That was a lot of fun to watch and Patrick was totally chuffed to have been a volunteer. The largest guy in the red shirt who worked at the museum was also called Patrick.  He was a funny moment when little Patrick met big Patrick.

So many trains so little time.  We watched the train turn table demonstration and saw many trains at the museum including the famous Flying Scotsman, Mallard and the Hogwart’s Express; plus the sign for Platform 9 ¾! 

 We (I’d) had enough of trains but now so we headed into York.  In the lovely York Museum Garden we came across ‘Wild Wednesday’ – activities set up by the museum staff just for kids!  Hooray.  Harris and Patrick had so much fun.  Check out the photos. 

 After being a little wild, the boys went for a walk along the city wall and headed back to the hostel whilst I set off to find a post office, caffeine and other items on my shopping list.  I passed York Minster on the way and took some photos. The outside of the cathedral was spectacular and I think the gargoyles on the building are even more impressive than the ones on Notre Dame.  I like the photo of the really old Minster with the modern ice cream van in front!

After the Minster I headed to the Shambles, a really old cobbled street where some of the buildings defy safety regulations I’m sure, all in the name of tourism. 

After pounding my feet on every street in York, I set off down the road to the hostel to meet up with the boys for dinner.  I passed St Peter’s School on the way, established in 627 AD (yep, 627 AD).

Dinner – tick, washing up – tick and then tell the manager about the drunk guy stealing food in the kitchen – tick!  Yep, young guy had been in the kitchen the night before and he looked like he was high (and not on life).  This night he looked even worse and had a bottle of wine with him; which is taboo in a licensed YHA.  When he took food off the young Finnish teenager’s dinner plate and then stood in front of the fridge wondering what he could steal next, I decided that was enough and informed management of his unwelcome presence.  Within 15 minutes he was evicted and I have no idea what became of him.  Can you imagine sharing a dorm room with him! God only knows what state he would wake up in.

At the end of our hallway was a very large tv room which the boys claimed as their own to watch ‘The Simpsons’ after dinner.  We were happily watching tv until 9 pm when the power went out.  We took it as a signal to go to bed and ½ hour later the power returned.  We were glad the power returned because you couldn’t use the tiny shower cubicles otherwise as there was no emergency lighting in them.  You wouldn’t have wanted to be in there when the power went out.  The next day we had a long drive ahead of us from York to Colchester so we were keen to get a good night’s sleep.


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