The day will come when I will die. So the only matter of consequence before me is what I will do with my allotted time. I can remain on shore, paralyzed with fear, or I can raise my sails and dip and soar in the breeze.--Richard Bode

Monday, June 3, 2013

Riding through the Snowdon National Park in Wales.

It has been a while since I posted last. It is hard finding wifi. I usually search out McDonald "restaurants" because they all have wifi, but McDonald's are not very numerous along the small roads and tiny towns I usually try driving through.

In my last post I talked about how much I enjoyed the Horizon's Unlimited meeting I went to. I am really glad I signed up for it. I met motorcycle riders from all over the world, and went to sessions chaired by riders who have been the most remote and interesting places.
Bob and John here were camped right next to me. They had set up under an enormous Chestnut tree. We shared this picnic table. They seem to understand the joy of these tables in the UK. I never see them at all elsewhere in Europe.
I don't remember what this session was all about. They were all good though, so I am sure I enjoyed this one.


There were a lot of vendors, too. I bought some luggage straps I had been looking for.
What do you think of this RV. It should certainly be able to go over about any road in the world (If you can afford the gas to run it).

I liked this Land Rover better. The couple who own it had just driven it back from Cape Town, South Africa. I asked why the lions didn't just jump up on it and eat them up while they were sleeping in the tent on top.  They assured me lions just won't do that. Hum!
IN between a session on motorcycle maintenance and a session on emergency medical treatment, I decided to visit the Road Kill Grill. Their motto was: "You kill it; we cook it". They had a rabbit skinning contest, which I decided not to enter. They had a bunch of beautiful ring-necked pheasants lying there (Did you know they have pheasants in England? I didn't.). I decided you would not really appreciate a picture of dead birds, no matter how pretty. Sorry ;-)
Look at all these well traveled motorcycles. The smallest was a Honda C90. The kid that owned it had bought it in southeast Asia, ridden it home, and then went to the Arctic Circle through Norway in January.  He is a little crazy, but he was very entertaining.

This is one well traveled pup. She rides in this basket everywhere. Too cute for words.

When Horizons Unlimited was over, I decided to explore some parts of the UK I've never been to. I rode north and west into the Peak District. It sure was pretty up there. It was Sunday; the sun was shining; the temperature perfect; and there were motorcycles, bicycles and hikers everywhere. These British certainly like to get out and enjoy nature when they have a rare sunny day.
I looked for some slow children, but I couldn't find any. They were all riding their bikes very fast or out hiking.
I did find a slow duck, though. :-)

I never ever know where my GPS is going to take me, and I seldom have more than the vaguest idea where I am. In this picture, my GPS was taking me down a single-track farm road. Gotta be careful going around curves. Never know when you might meet someone coming the other way.
Notice the hedgerow. I love these things. Every so often a pheasant or a tiny hedgehog will run out of them. Sure don't want  to run over one of those cute guys.

There are stone walls like this everywhere. Do you know where the stones came from? They came from generations of fathers and their sons removing them from their fields by hand. Back breaking!!
A typical village: maybe 10 houses and tiny little lanes. What do people do for entertainment? Just work?
I stopped to take a picture of three cute little lambs, but they came running right up to me like I was the strangest thing they had seen all day. I couldn't get far enough away from them to take their picture. Mamma Ewe here was a little more stand-offish. Come back here you ba-a-a-d lambs!

The sheep get all mixed up in the fields, so how does a sheep rancher know which one is his? You brand them, of course, with spray paint.
Oh you take the blue lambs and I'll take the red ones, and I'll be in Scotland before you.
Sorry, couldn't resist.
I found a beautiful place to camp last night. Ann and Brian (pronounced Bree-un) were there and kept me entertained. Brian is Welsh and was just chock full of interesting knowledge about history and the Welsh language. I'm not sure who the lady on the bike was. She was riding by and I invited her to be in our picture.

Brian there on the left.
And Ann
I had to take this picture of a British phone booth for my youngest daughter, Victoria.  She watches a tv series about a guy who travels around the universe in a phone booth.  So this is for you, Victoria.

I've been riding in the mountains of Snowdonia, Wales, all day. They are really high and rugged. No wonder the English were never able to catch the Welsh. The Welsh are fiercely independent still to this day.
These Welsh mountains are the highest in the UK other than the highlands of Scotland, in case you are interest in such things.

For any US farmers who are following this blog, here is a typical UK farm.

A final picture of the mountains of Snowdonia (and of one grizzled looking mountain man).
I think I have about used up my wifi time, so gotta go find a campsite for tonight.
More later,