Well we did the educational thing and then the mindless thing. Actually, at the end of the day the kids preferred the educational thing.
Pevensey Castle used to be right on the Southern coast of England, but due to time and tide it is now a mile inland. The castle has been in ruins for ages, but was used as a WWII outpost with the crumbling towers camouflaging soldier barracks and gun towers. The outer wall has Roman & Medieval components, while the inner wall has two dungeons (only one with stairs – the other you got lowered in by rope). It actually had a manned (womanned) information booth and gift shop, so we were able to get Ian his audio guide enabling us all to concentrate and browse. Our favorite part was the pyramidal stack of stone catapult balls that had been fished out of the moat.
After a chilly, windy wait at the train platform for 40 minutes (nearly getting sucked onto the express trains that whizzed past without stopping) we finally headed for Brighton. On the train we met an inquisitive 2-year-old George who wore a friend’s baseball cap. George could not accept that it was baseball when I commented on it – he was quite insistent that it was a cricket hat. His big brother Alfie did a lot of translating between George and Ian.
Brighton was HUGE – more like a seaside London. We made our way down a LONG hill toward the sea, stopping off for baguette pizzas and jacket potatoes and popping into a collectibles shop before making it to the beach. The kids rode a carousel on land, then on the pier Megan rode a whizzer and Ian jumped on a huge trampoline. You could see the ocean through the slats of the pier, and when the boom ride was on you could feel the whole thing sway. Needless to say, the kids enjoyed the pier much more than Kurt and I did. And the wind! I think it actually beat Chicago.
We all collapsed back at the guest flat and ate leftovers from the night before. After the kids went to bed, Kurt and I watched Match of the Day since we’d gone a whole Saturday with no football (we usually watch 3 matches on Fox Soccer Channel at home). Poor Newcastle.
Quote of the Day:
Ian, at the guest flat: “I washed my hands in the little sink.” (It was a bidet…)
Megan, while drawing in her journal: “I liked the rides in Brighton, but I liked Pevensey the best. I can see it in my mind, and my drawing actually looks like it.” (She really is getting better at perspective.)