Thursday, October 08, 2009

ok... now where were we? i think we had just got back to the railways station Gare Nord in Paris... we had a bite to eat over the road, watching some gypsies(?) begging in the street, asking everyone for money, following people holding out their hands, we were still in the cab and the driver said, dont give them anything, and be careful they're after your possessions!

Mom and i had, yet another drink up stairs at the station being somewhat early! we went through the two border controls, French first then English and waited at the departures area, boarded on time, left on time!

we stopped at Ashford in Kent, then it was on to St Pancras, we were ten minutes late coming in, so it was a mad crazy dash from the Eurostar platform to go up to where the train up to Nottingham was already waiting, the doors closed! they were opened everyone boarded and the doors shut, train pulled out! we arrived into the station at 8:20pm and left at 8:30pm.... we had a ten minute window to get from A to B, and we did it!

from there it was a two hour journey to Nottingham, the train was long, and made up of two trains, so in total four engines... just before most of the stops an announcement came over saying if you were getting off at this next station you would have to make your way through two carriages or more and the buffet carriage to alight from the train, as the platforms were so short!

and at Leicester if you were getting off before Nottingham you had to get off and get back on in the first train, no way past the engines of course! we were ok though, but was worrying all the announcements, wondering if we were meant to do this or that, but i knew the train went to Nottingham, and we were not getting off in between!

it was strange getting off there too, never been to the station before, late at night, and straight into a cab and off to a hotel... very clandestine!

the lady of the hotel kept the place open for us, its a bar restaurant, a tapas place actually! The Olive Tree Bar and Hotel! and very nice it was too, only five minutes walk into town, few minutes from the castle, perfect location! after arriving we must have been asleep within the hour.... ZZZZZzzzzzz

at Ten o'clock the following morning, Thursday, Mom and i met up with Barry, first son, we had arranged to meet by Debenhams, we were there, and so was Barry, just didn't see him at first! we went for a coffee, Costas, first, then took a great tour of the Galleries of Justice Museum, great place, and great tour!

we were the only three in our tour, which of course made it very personal! you are given a prisoner number when you get your tickets, and after the interesting bit in the old court room, which they use for filming now, and not for justice! you are sent down to the cells and link your number to a prisoner of the past, i was a 15 yr old girl who had killed the 2yr old of her employer, so i was to be hung in the next two days... we were given a good talking to by the turn key man, and very sorry we were too for our crimes! Mom and Barry were both thieves (so their prisoner numbers decreed!!) and even shut in a gaol! nice and dark that was... anyway he opened the door, and told us to get on our way, to the womans section... down the dark and twisted stairs we went, down and down... and i turned into the room at the bottom, as i did so i saw a woman standing there, very still, dressed head to foot in black, with a sharp white stiff colar, hands held together... i actually thought she was dummy, there were many stationed all over the place... but then i realised her eyes for following me into the room, and guess out of nervousness i laughed.... huge mistake! she actually told me off!

seriously! and she actually made me feel as though i had done wrong!

our prisoner numbers now linked up to 3 different prisoners from the past, i along with Mom and Barry was also a thief!!! she told us of how our days would be, two hours learning to read and write, an hour at bible study, then into the wash room we went where she showed us our duties! she had Mom and Baz bashing out the washing, but i had to take over from Baz! at this point she told of how my *persona* managed to hold on to some of this washing, tear it up, tie it up and excape over the rear wall.... never realising there was a 70foot drop, my bits of torn sheets not long enough to reach the ground, but, only blood was found beneath the wall, and although a large reward was out for the person to return *me*, no one ever did... i wonder if she landed on her face and no one was ever able to identify her! she was never heard of again...

from there we were shown where *we* would sleep, a big enough room, but one bed, for however many women prisoners were there, two or ten! with diseases or infirmities, or mental illnesses... and one po to... well! and an open window for disposal of aforementioned, lets hope the wind is blowing in the other direction eh!!!

the women were at least taught and kept busy, five minutes in the yard for them, an hour i think for the men, but no teaching! and they had to pay the turn key chap every week! he used to keep 10 men in the cell instead of 3 to make a few bob, the turn key men did not get paid so did what they could...

after we left the scary lady and the womens prision we went out into the yard... i really should have used my camera here... the walls were lined with the inscriptions of prisoners of so long ago... well over a hundred years and more... decades of peoples names and dates, or just lines with a cross running through it.... very very poignant...

there was a little more, lots of photos and writings and museum pieces...

there is also a tour of the caves which looks fascinating, so next time Baz i am in your town, i will be going this again, and the rest!

we then went for some lunch! unlike the prisoners of the past we sat down and had a good meal of noodles! followed by a run around the shops... we left Barry and went back to the hotel, had a bit of a rest and later on went out for dinner, just to the high street, an Italian place, Mom and i sat in a window seat and watched the world of Nottingham go by, well the people who were in and out of the Tesco over the road anyway!

the man who served us was an American like us! he was born in Miami but grew up in Brooklyn, so a New Yorker like Mom...!

and so to bed....

we met up with Barry in the morning, us with our heavy bags... another coffee and down to the bus station... bus was late leaving, the driver hadn't turned up! so we were about quarter of an hour late, we met a great lady at the bus station from Sweden... we talked at the stop, and later on the bus, she is a doctor, and her business is minerals and healthy eating... something we should all take more notice of, infact when i get home i will take another look at the food intolerance results i had done, i remember he checked for things i was missing out on too, although thats been a while now, over a year, so not sure how things would be by now!

so where shall i leave Mom and i? on the bus headed south....

because now i am .... all typed out! i am doing lasagne for dinner tonight for Kate and Tony at their house... my bags are packed!

today's quote isn't great, i thought of it, i think(?) Mom and i on the bus today and a huge truck would of ploughed into us had our driver not stopped in time, Mom said that would cure us for sure of everything! and i replied...

yes... death cures all ills...


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