Dear diary, we are now in England and in a few hours we'll get the ferry (or the train that goes under the Channel) to France. But we have some little bits of megalithic Scotland and England to tell you before our journey back to Italy. And keep in touch: our trip is not over yet...
After our bulls' day (see Saturday 18th), from Moffat we went to the Borders, the Scottish area where our tour began more than 50 days ago. And we ended it at Burgh Hill, a little stone circle that we weren't able to find in our very first Scottish day. This time the weather was much better and after seven weeks of Scottish walks, we were much trained for climbing the steep hill where this megalithic site lies. We slept in our last Scottish bed & breakfast (the delightful and comfortable Old Schoolhouse in Birgham, by Coldstream and the English border: we warmly suggest it). And the next day we spent our last Scottish notes (they have the same value of the English ones but a different pattern) in Scottish postcards in our last Scottish Tourist Information Centre. How sad all these LAST Scottish actions! After more than 50 days of Scotland we are keen on coming back home, but at the same time we are accustomed to this country and pretty sad to leave it. "Haste ye back", as they say here.
Anyway, we crossed the river Tweeed and were in England. On our way back to Dover, we decided to visit some megalithic sites (again!) that we would like to put in the Stones of England section of our Stone Pages website. So, in pouring rain (what a change...) we began with Northumberland, driving to Duddo, a nice stone circle unfortunately visible only from far away because it was surrounded by fields in crop. Later we visited Roughting Linn and Lordenshaw cup-and-ring marked rocks. Then we went to North Yorkshire, where we visited the beautiful Yockenthwaite stone circle by the river Wharfe (strangely it is reported neither by the very detailed OS map nor by our mythical megalithic expert and author Aubrey Burl in his Stone Circles guide).
After a long drive in the traffic of the motorway and several minor roads, we went to Arthur's Stone, an interesting chambered tomb not far from the Welsh border, in Herefordshire. Then we drove to Gloucestershire and the beautiful area of Cotswolds, where we walked to the fine chambered long barrows of Belas Knap (with an unusual false entrance and some side chambers), Nympsfield and Uley (better known as Hetty Pegler's Tump. A little note from Paola for all the girls interested in megaliths: this site is full of mommy spiders caring their bag-nests with love; it mustn't be pleasant to crawl inside it when hundreds of baby spiders will burst out from those bags).
Today we would like to go to Oxfordshire and then down to Dover. Will our brave Twingo bear another couple thousands of kilometers (in our tour it has already covered more than 10,000 km)? Will we survive the shock of coming back to sunshine, 40 degrees Celsius and "real" summer? Will we forever change our breakfast from cappuccino and croissant to tea and eggs and bacon? You will find it out in the next days, reading the (last?) page of our diary. See you soon.
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