"Onwards and upwards (figuratively speaking)...." leics's Profile
You'll find a bit more about me personally in the albums at the bottom of this page: this page mainly focuses on the travelling and archaeological aspects.
When my children became independent adults I was finally able to start travelling. I simply could not afford to travel outside the UK before that, although I did manage a daytrip to Calais and a couple of very short trips to Paris. Now I have limited time available to cram in as much as I possibly can because when I retire there simply won't be enough money for much, if any, travelling. So that's what I'm doing....cramming in as much as I can!
I've almost always travelled alone, out of necessity rather than choice. If I didn't travel alone, I would rarely travel. My first solo 'abroad' was to Rome , which I loved... especially OstiaAntica and I've really enjoyed everywhere I've visited..
My travel has largely been budget flights and cheapish hotels, though I've been on a couple of package holidays, for convenience more than anything else. I like to spend my time wandering around, seeing how people live and (especially) seeing what once was. 'Modern' things hold no real interest for me, though I sometimes enjoy pootling round shops to see what's on offer and at what price. But I don't 'do' shopping!
VT has been a huge help, not only by giving me information which made me feel more confident as a solo middle-aged female traveller but also providing ideas about what to see and do. I've made so many friends through the site, meeting lots of VT-ers in reality as well as virtually, attending VT meetings both large and small, in the UK and abroad. Those friendships have taken me to places I'm sure I would never have visited without VT!
January: Canterbury, Rochester, Whitstable and Sandwich..
Luxembourg with daytrips by train to Metz in France and Trier in Germany.
Easter: a very cold and somewhat stressful return visit to Krakow (the farmer's wife choice), where we spent a lovely evening chatting with 68maciek . And a retrun trip to Amsterdam visiting Delft, Den Haag (The Hague) and Leiden, where I met PJ and Swanet for an afternoon's wandering.
May: My first trip to Switzerland (Zurich, Lucerne, Rapperswil) It was lovely to meet up with Yumyum and Horcheck again...thank you both for the walking tour and the company. :-)
July/August: The annual trip to the USA, visiting New York, New Haven, Niantic, Mystic, San Francisco ,El Segundo and Los Angeles.
And, finally, after more than three years of 'trying to get around to it', Riga, in Latvia.
September: A super weekend with The Oop North Crew in Buxton (Derbyshire, UK) visiting Tideswell, the Plague village of Eyam and Bakewell followed a couple of weeks later by the annual, and very enjoyable, London Treasure Hunt organised by London-Calling
October: A couple of days in Hereford, but appallingly wet weather, grey skies and general gloom meant I cut my planned trip short.
December/January: a trip to Spain, based in Nerja and ...fingers crossed...at least some sunshine as well as making visits to other places.
2012 began with a little of Cornwall and Devon: Penzance, Madron, Marazion, Mousehole, St Just, Lands End St Michael's Mount. Tiverton, Launceston, Jamaica Inn and Exeter.
February: My first visit to Spain: Madrid, meeting Redang and SirRichard there and making a daytrip to Toledo.
April: Return to Venice, staying in Mestre with daytrips to lovely Padova and to Verona.
June: The Eurmeet in Bergamo was just as good as we three organisers hoped it would be. I also visited Albino, Clusone and Sarnico.
July: Another return to Rome
August: Iowa, based in friendly, comfortable Iowa City and visiting:
the Amana Colonies
the Amish settlement of Kalona
the lake at Solon
the bridge at Sutcliff
Then a Megabus trip to Chicago and spent a couple of days exploring, with thanks to Riorich55 :-)
September: The VT Halifax Meet was as excellent as ever (thanks to Ricky52).
October: I enjoyed the London Treasure Hunt in October
And made my first visit to Slovakia, meeting VT friends (thank you, Katamorgana!) in Piestany, spending a few nights in Bratislava and making daytrips to , Trnava and Vienna.
November: Another fun Manchester Christmas Markets meet (many thanks to Gillybob).
Como, Torno. Pavia
March: Florence Pisa, Lucca and Fiesole
May: London for an historical exploration and a couple of fun VT meetings.
Bergamo in preparation for the 2012 Euromeet.
Varenna , Lecco
First trip to the US in July, visiting New York, New Haven and Boston. Guilford, Pomfret, Sleeping Giant State Park, Storrs, Woodstock and Sturbridge. I saw chipmunks in Sturbridge, huge butterflies in Connecticut and humpback whales in Boston (well, on a trip from Boston). :-)
August: A truly wonderful trip to the wild, empty Shetland Isles
Sumburgh, Scalloway, St Ninian's Isle, Lunna, Tingwall, Trondra island, Sullom Voe, Eshaness and
I was blessed with four sunny days with barely any wind. It was magical.
October: My first visit to an active volcanic site:
Castellammare di Stabia and
November:ManchesterChristmas Markets VT meeting.
February: first trip to a sub-zero Amsterdam and
March: Prague, making a day-trip to Kutna Hora and the bone church at Sedlec.
May: Euromeet in Krakow was excellent as I expected it to be.
Wieliczka salt mine. Wadowice, Kalwaria Zebrzydowska and the previously-unpronouncable Pszczyna
July: Lovely Northern Ireland
The Halifax VT meet, was as much fun as ever. Sowerby Bridge Rushbearing again...excellent fun (especially the belly-dancing female Morris team)!
September: VT London Treasure Hunt, organised by Jo104 and quizmaster Planxty.
March: Athens and brilliant side-visit to Sounio (thanks to VT-er Janetanne).
Slovenia (Bad Radkersberg)
Hungary:(Lenti) Croatia (Cakovec)
May: Euromeet in Cascais Lisbon Portugal
July:Northern Bavaria: (Wurzburg, Nurnburg, Bamberg, Regensburg
Darmstadt (many, many thanks to Trekki). She took me to: Hering, Hummeltroth, Lorsch, lovely Freinsheim, Ibersheim, Rheindurkheim and Worms
November: Manchester, at Gillybob's Manchester Christmas Markets VT meet.
December: Northern Cyprus
October: Pisa and Lucca, La Spezia Riomaggiore, Corniglia and Vernazza
February: Pompeii Sorrento
Herculaneum, Oplontis, Capri Amalfi.
March: Rome and Tivoli, then Venice.
VT Euromeet Karlsruhe
Bruges Flanders battlefields
September: Halifax VTmeet
Winchester , Windsor, Silchester and Salisbury
Ireland , Carcassonne , Narbonne and Florence
Turkey: Hisaronu, Fethiye and Kayakoy.
I'm was, until recently, keen archaeologist in my spare time. In the main photo (excavating Medieval dump deposits in York) I'm the one in the hat.
For five summers I dug at Sedgeford in Norfolk. There is dig info on that page, and in the travelogues below. It's excellent fun, and anyone can join. So if you fancy exploring a bit of Anglo-Saxon England next year, look at the SHARP website.
I used to do a great deal of 'fieldwalking', although I have done far less over the past few years because farming practices have changed. 'Fieldwalking' means walking across ploughed fields very slowly, picking up evidence from the past. People used to put the contents of their rubbish heaps onto their fields so there's always lots of pottery to find, and this will show when the area was occupied. Many fields will produce not only pottery from Medieval and Roman times but even flint tools from more than 10000 years ago. Fieldwalking is a great stress-buster and really brings the past to life. England is particularly good for this type of archaeology, because there has been such intensive settlement and farming over the centuries.
There's much less fieldwalking for me to do nowadays because local farming practices have substantially changed, and that's a great sadness for me. It can be wet and cold, and very muddy indeed, but picking up a Mesolithic arrowhead like the one in the photo (8000-10000 years old) gives me a huge thrill.
I think the best UK prehistory sites are in Orkney. The albums below have some info too.
Leicestershire is quite big and I only live in a small part of it ......... but it's ok for now. I'd much rather be living in the middle of nowhere, between the sea and the mountains, or in another country entirely. We'll see what happens.
The UK is a fascinating country (or grouping of countries) from a historical and landscape perspective. I've made as many pages as I can about places large and small. They are listed on my England and Wales pages. I've been to Scotland as well, but too long ago to have the photos available for VT.
So.....onwards and upwards, exploring and finding-out, seeing what there is to see, by myself or not. The world is a huge place, with an infinity of excitements.......how can one not be thrilled by the potentials and possibilities?
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