Thursday, November 1

Durham weekend

A couple of weeks ago myself and Gareth took the train up to Durham for the weekend, to watch The Sixteen perform their choral pilgrimage at the cathedral, but also to spend a couple of days exploring a city that was new to both of us. The concert was beautiful and haunting, the cathedral the perfect place to hear such pure choral music. I almost forgot to breathe a few times, I was so captivated.

We stayed in an apartment that, while very comfortable, was furnished like it used to be the show flat (TEN, yes TEN big vases full of twigs in a TWO bedroom apartment. There were six in the living room alone!) and spent the weekend walking the bridges, cobbled streets and riverside footpaths of the city and its surrounds.

And boy there are plenty of all those things. The sun shone on us all weekend, unlike the south east from which we had reports of endless rain, and we trod the wooded, muddy footpaths for miles each day, taking many photos and stopping now and again for a sandwich or coffee.

Kingsgate Bridge, Arup's modernist masterpiece, stepping through the tree canopy 

Viewed from the riverbank, a very different prospect
It's a beautiful bridge with classic details

Gareth experienced his first full-on northern Friday night out, which to the uninitiated means hordes of single-sex groups roaming from pub to pub with no coats on, some with barely any clothes. Unbelievably high stiletto heels were much in evidence, which the cobbles were playing havoc with, even before the drink started to have the inevitable effect on balance. I grew up witnessing such shenanigans and found myself at pains to fit in, so never attempted to do so. It was the start of a happy  lifetime of being a non-conformist!

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