Mister Eclectic (howeird) wrote,
Mister Eclectic

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Howeird Hears a Who...not

Greetings from Cardiff, home of Dr. Who 2005-6. The day started in Penzance, with too much of it spent on the train, thanks to misinformation from the info booth at the train station. They told me the 10:25 to Cardiff arrived at 14:47, but in fact it arrives at 4:47 pm. For those of you who are 24-hour impaired, that's 2 hours later. So instead of taking the 9:30 to Bristol and changing to a train there which actually does arrive in Cardiff at 14:47, I took an hour to write postcards and have something to drink and buy a sandwich for the trip. Oh well.

Penzance is a lovely town, combo of quaint seaside harbor village and third-rate business center. Kind of like Livermore, the latter. Small enough to walk around in an hour or so. I did manage to find the police station, which is un-marked as to where it is located. Very odd, it only had the one little street lamp-shaped object above the door saying "Police" and nowhere on or around the building doe sit specifically say "Penzance". So when you see the photo of me in front of it, you'll just have to take my word. It was easy to take the photo, because there's a nice flat-topped wall about 4 feet tall around the parking entrance, and I was able to use the self-timer. So that fantasy is fulfilled.

Lots of eye candy this trip - young women wearing short skirts, the Peter Pan style is popular here, and it's almost obligatory to have a bare midriff, and below-the-hips waistline. Flip a coin between push-up bras and bra-less being the more popular. Unfortunately, on closer inspection, it's clear that  most of the teenage women here are overweight. Few flat tummies, few bubble butts. Few toned legs or arms. There is not the large number of seriously obese people here that you'll see in the US, but also not a large number of fitness enthusiasts.

The scenery outside the window is pretty consistent. Farm lands are all separated by hedge rows, often built up on earthen walls. It makes the landscape look something like a game board. As far as towns go, you can't swing a cat around by its tail without hitting an Old Stone Church, or a New Stone Church, or the ruins of an Old Stone Church. They seem to come in two models: Spires and square parapets. Housing is cheek by jowl - everyone seems to live with at least one neighbor's home joined at the hip, usually two. The large port city of Plymouth looks like housing development gone mad. It puts Levittown to shame.

This time I took a single train from point A to point B, and it was not so bad. Not crowded, and room in the baggage rack for my pack. Only had someone sitting next to me for one short hop, a girl of about 10 whose grandma parked her and her brother across the aisle from each other.

Arrived in Cardiff a few minutes early, went outside and there was Millennium Stadium right in front of me. Got the required photos right away, and since I knew my hotel was on Castle Street near Cardiff Castle, also near the stadium, I just kept walking along the river front alongside the stadium until I found a castle. Looked to my right and the hotel was a block away.

I'm happy about that because Cardiff is huge. I'm guessing it's as big as Oakland.  Maybe bigger.

And it's chock full of beautiful women. Maybe tomorrow I'll point the camera their way more. Today's photos were mostly of the impressive clock tower and wall-top guardians of the castle.

After shooting around the castle, I went in search of a Starbuck's, since the hotel internet access costs $6 an hour. Found one in a local mall, but it was about to close. Found another a few blocks away which was open till 7, so I went back to the hotel, grabbed the laptop, and sent the last day's LJ, checked email, and sent some more wedding pix to my mailing list. Just in time for closing.

I'm now back in the hotel, and will probably send this on the hotel system, while I double-check trains to Glasgow. Something the last couple of days has taught me is the train schedules are not the whole story. Which train line you take, and whether it's high-speed or locl makes a huge difference. My rail pass has been a wonderful tool, have had no problems with it at all. Which means I can change plans with impunity, with no monetary cost.

Tags: england

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