Looking for OT

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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Wed Aug 10, 2005 7:04 pm

<At the sound of the whip cracking. OT resumes his toiling over the travelogue.....>

Our next base of ops was Harogate, most noted for its mineral baths, but we'll talk about that later. First, along the way we stop at Ripon, to sing an evensong at the cathedral:

Ripon cathedral:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/riponcath1.jpg" alt=" - " />

In strolling around the cemetary surrounding the cathedral(and to stretch Altoid's legs), we came across this most eloquent of epitaphs:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/grave2.jpg" alt=" - " />
They don't write 'em like they used to.....

Once inside, this is the nave of the cathedral:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/riponnave.jpg" alt=" - " />

And the east window, above the high altar:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/riponeastwin.jpg" alt=" - " />

One of the quirks the cathedral is known for is its organ case, which doubles as the quire screen. Take a close look at the outside of the small balcony. There is a wooden hand protruding from it.
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/riponorgan1.jpg" alt=" - " /> <img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/riponhand.jpg" alt=" - " />

The hand is a mechanical director, built by the organist in the 1590's to enable him to lead the choir whilst playing. It used to be flesh colored(which would have made it much easier to spot in the photo), but was refinished in the 19th century, as I recall.
Rather ingenious.

We spent our free time prior to evensong having tea/lunch at a charming outdoor tea shop? room? patio?, and then rehearsed and sang our evensong. The clergy who read the prayers went to some pains to acknowledge us and the San Diego diocese in the prayers(she leaned over and asked me for some facts during one of the readings), but unfortunately was not up to speed as to who the current bishop in the San Diego diocese is, and named the former(granted, only gone ~4 months) bishop instead of the current one. Oh well, I'm sure he could use the prayers too, even if he is gone fishin'.

Next stop: York!

<small>[ 08-10-2005, 08:09 PM: Message edited by: OperaTenor ]</small>
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby piqaboo » Wed Aug 10, 2005 7:30 pm

Three things in addition stand out in my mind about Ripon.
a) the crypt was closed, but they let us thru it anyway. It was built ~700 AD for a previous church on the site, and only the crypt remains of the original building.

b) there was some confusion amongst us whether we'd be singing from the choir stalls or from a second location. The shop sold postcards showing each. The shoplady let me exchange postcards to show the correct location, with no problem at all. She was warm and friendly about the whole exchange.

c) one of our member left his backpack sitting in a pew as he wandered about. It was spotted. Because there was a SD paper sticking out of it, we were generously permitted to ask around til we found its owner. Had that paper not been seen, "the authorities" would have been notified, the backpack removed from the building, and destroyed.

After that, I was afraid to leave the stroller ("pushchair") unattended for a minute. Altoid is familiar with it, comfy in it, naps well in it, and we couldnt afford to have it blown up!

<small>[ 08-10-2005, 08:36 PM: Message edited by: piqaboo ]</small>
Altoid - curiously strong.
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby Trumpetmaster » Thu Aug 11, 2005 4:56 am

[quote]Originally posted by OperaTenor:
[b] I see the power of Google at work.

:(
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Thu Aug 11, 2005 2:27 pm

The travelogue will resume as soon as I get back from my..............root canal.............

:eek:
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby barfle » Thu Aug 11, 2005 3:00 pm

OWWWWWWWW!

It's not as bad as college (having done both).
--I know what I like--
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby BigJon@Work » Thu Aug 11, 2005 4:55 pm

Originally posted by barfle:
It's not as bad as college (having done both).
Yes it is!
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Thu Aug 11, 2005 5:28 pm

I say worse than college.

:sore:
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:05 pm

York:

Our second day in Harogate was a trip to York, originally just to go in long enough to give an informal concert in the minster, but there was a majority of folks who wanted to spend more time there, so we ended up making an entire day of it. Our first stop was at the abbey ruins near the minster:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkabbey1.jpg" alt=" - " />

This is actually part of the old wall that abuts the abbey grounds.
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkabbey2.jpg" alt=" - " />

From the inside:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkabbey6.jpg" alt=" - " />
Back to the abbey. My understanding it was a victim of Henry VIII's administrators. <img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkabbey3.jpg" alt=" - " />

Altoid seemed to be troubled by none of that.
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkabbey4.jpg" alt=" - " />

We found the melding of ruins with later buildings interesting: <img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkabbey5.jpg" alt=" - " />

From that area, we decided to go up and walk along the top of the old city wall for a bit, Altoid's stroller and all:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkwall1.jpg" alt=" - " />

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkwall2.jpg" alt=" - " />

To be continued on the next post.

<small>[ 08-11-2005, 07:33 PM: Message edited by: OperaTenor ]</small>
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby piqaboo » Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:18 pm

Altoid did not enjoy the wall. She started hollerin' and fussin' something fierce part way along it. Can't remember why, if we ever figured it out. Only thing that would calm her was to hold her in our arms. And that was intermittent.
And of course, I'm none too thrilled to be holding a screaming squirming baby so far above the ground! I stayed well back from the dropoffs, and other tourists stayed well back from me!
Altoid - curiously strong.
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Thu Aug 11, 2005 6:31 pm

More on the wall in York:

Looks like a moat must've run along at least some of it:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkwall3.jpg" alt=" - " />

We went back down at Monk's Gate, which set us down at the doorstep of the Shambles, which is the somewhat midiaeval section of the city. It mostly has shops that cater to tourists, though they are housed in period buildings.

We had a spectacular view of the Minster from the wall:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkwall4.jpg" alt=" - " />

Our approach to Monk's Gate:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkwall5.jpg" alt=" - " />

We were intrigued by the various states of sttling the old buildings were undergoing:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorksag1.jpg" alt=" - " />

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorksag2.jpg" alt=" - " />

In the Shambles, I got my introduction to the wonderful world of English bakeries. Piq had me try sausage rolls and pasties there. My first pasty wasn't traditional, however. Instead of Cornish, I opted for the steak and stilton they offered at this particular bakery.
I am now an official English bakery addict.

After this wandering, we needed to go into the Minster for our performance, which was only ~20 minutes of singing. After that, we hung around inside and ended up getting a very thorough tour of the Minster. Our guide was giving his last tour for the day, and was willing to ramble on as long as we were willing to listen, or until evensong was about to start, whichever came first(it turned out to be evensong).

Let's face it: I suck at hand-held timed exposures. Piq's pretty good at it, and I should have handed her the camera, but that notion was apparently beyond the scope of my puny perception at the time.
This fuzzy representation is the nave. I thought I ought to include it, just to give the scope of the hugeness of the Minster's interior:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster4.jpg" alt=" - " />

This is the east window:

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster5.jpg" alt=" - " />

And the west window, which is actually much larger than the east window:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster8.jpg" alt=" - " />
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby Trumpetmaster » Fri Aug 12, 2005 5:15 am

Awesome!!!
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby treebeau » Fri Aug 12, 2005 10:27 am

Originally posted by piqaboo:
...And of course, I'm none too thrilled to be holding a screaming squirming baby so far above the ground! I stayed well back from the dropoffs, and other tourists stayed well back from me!
You obviously did not learn that from Michael Jackson. kudos!!

Loving the travelogue and pictures!!

Regards,
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Mon Aug 15, 2005 1:06 pm

Thanks, guys!

Yorkminster, continued:

This is the north transcept, with its window titled "The Five Sisters". All in original midiaeval glass. It is peculiar in its subtle colors and variations in geometirc designs, as opposed to portrayals of saints or religious scenes. Following is a view of the window from the outside, to give perspective to its enormity.

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster6.jpg" alt=" - " />
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster15.jpg" alt=" - " />

This is the ceiling of the chapter house. These structures were so named because the monks used to meet daily in here, and the constant part of the ritual was to read a chapter of their rulesof their order. It is now used only for important meetings of the officials of the church. They had met there to elect a new bishop only the day before.
Once again, sorry for the blurry hand held timed exposure.

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster9.jpg" alt=" - " />

This is the exquisite tiled floor of the chapter house. One of the remarkable aspects of the house is it is the largest chapter house with no central support for the roof. In the background you can see folks sitting in the stalls, of which greater detail is to follow.

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster23.jpg" alt=" - " />

Here are the stalls close up. In the canopies above the stalls are carved small busts, depicting all sorts of creatures and people, some serious, some comical, and some gruesome:

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster10.jpg" alt=" - " />
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster11.jpg" alt=" - " />
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster12.jpg" alt=" - " />
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster13.jpg" alt=" - " />
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Mon Aug 15, 2005 1:22 pm

This is the exterior of the chapter house:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster21.jpg" alt=" - " />

Back in the main church, this is half of the quire screen:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster14.jpg" alt=" - " />


Here are more exterior photos of the minster. I know I've spent a lot of time on it, but I feel this is one of England's most eloquent expressions of gothic architecture(at least that I've seen). Note the quintessetial flying butresses, as well as all of the empty plinths. It was explained to us that the plinths were built for future statuary, but with the Reformation, they were never used as that type of notariety became associated with idolatry.

The exterior of the nave. looking back towards the central tower: <img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster16.jpg" alt=" - " />

The north transcept and chapter house. That's Piq and Altoid on the grass: <img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster17.jpg" alt=" - " />

The central tower: <img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster18.jpg" alt=" - " />

Piq making a daisy chain for Altoid: <img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster19.jpg" alt=" - " />

The nave once again, looking toward the west wall: <img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster20.jpg" alt=" - " />

This park from where all these exterior photos was taken was where the bishop's residence once stood. All that is left is this ruin of an arcade, turned into a war memorial:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/yorkminster22.jpg" alt=" - " />
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby BigJon@Work » Thu Aug 25, 2005 6:17 pm

We're waiting . . .
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Thu Aug 25, 2005 6:33 pm

Oh, okay. I started to think no one was paying attention. Tomorrow there will be at least one more installment posted.

Sorry.
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Fri Aug 26, 2005 12:02 am

Okay, back on the trail.....

Our next day was a free morning in Harrogate. As far as we could tell, except for having a nice market area in the center of town, it's biggest notariety seems to have been its mineral baths and Royal Pump Room. When we first rolled into town, we spotted a very interesting building whcih had "Victorian Baths" carved into its facade. When we set out to explore, it was our first destination. Unfortunately, it was closed down. But, parked in front, was this MG. I didn't know they were being made once again.
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/hgate1.jpg" alt=" - " />

This is the Royal Pump Room, site of mineral baths going back to midiaeval times as I recall.
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/hgate2.jpg" alt=" - " />

On the side of the building is a plaque and a spigot. When you flip the switch, some of the sulphur water is dispensed. Altoid was fascinated by it.
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/hgate4.jpg" alt=" - " />
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/hgate3.jpg" alt=" - " />

These were some beautiful flowers Piq noticed outside the Pump Room:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/hgate5.jpg" alt=" - " />

This was an interesting round building in the middle of the old market section:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/hgate6.jpg" alt=" - " />

The next day we left Harrogate for Coventry, where we had an informal concert in the cathedral.
This is the new cathedral, built as a memorial to the old St. Michael's church, which was bombed in WWII.
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven5.jpg" alt=" - " />

This porch joins the new cathedral with the ruins:

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven6.jpg" alt=" - " />

I understand there is to this day a bit of controversey surrounding the new cathedral. I tried to keep an open mind, but I found the building missing what I characterize as finesse in the shaping of stone as found in the old cathedrals. To me, it doesn't take much artistry to build a stone structure of straight lines and sharp angles. It lacks soul, IMO.
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby OperaTenor » Fri Aug 26, 2005 12:37 am

More on Coventry.

I ended up taking only one photo inside the new cathedral. I regret not taking one of the choir stalls, which I thought looked like part of an Office Depot warehouse. Above the stalls was "sculpture", which literally looked like scores of office chair bases turned upside down and stacked on each other. Bizarre. The only item I saw in there I felt had any craftsmanship associated with it are these chairs:

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven11.jpg" alt=" - " />

This plaque is mounted on the wall of the old church adjacent to the west tower and spire. While there is nothing left of the rest of the church but a shell, the tower and spire were virtually untouched, windows and all.
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven1.jpg" alt=" - " />

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven2.jpg" alt=" - " />

The church that seems to be part of the tower is actually Holy Trinity church(more on that later), which is just to the west of St. Michael's:

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven4.jpg" alt=" - " />

A lot of the windows in the ruins still have bits of glass in them:
<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven8.jpg" alt=" - " />

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven10.jpg" alt=" - " />

Unfortunately, it was impossible to get any large views of the inside of the ruins. A production of Beauty and the Beast was being staged inside the ruins. You can see part of the set in the photo above.

Inside the ruins, this is the remnant of the base of one of the columns in the nave. Note the spiral staircase steps.

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven7.jpg" alt=" - " />

This was a monument on one of the walls in the nave. Notice how the marble appears to have peeled like paint from the intense heat of the fire from the bombing.

<img src="http://www.operatenor.100megs24.com/coven9.jpg" alt=" - " />
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby Trumpetmaster » Fri Aug 26, 2005 5:11 am

OT & Piq,
Looks like it was a great trip
Awesome pictures.
Thanks
TM
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Re: Looking for OT

Postby BigJon@Work » Fri Aug 26, 2005 2:01 pm

Originally posted by OperaTenor:
But, parked in front, was this MG. I didn't know they were being made once again.
To my sorrow, they're not anymore. http://www.detnews.com/2005/autosinsider/0506/02/0auto-200348.htm
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