technoir: (Dr.Quest)
( Mar. 12th, 2003 12:11 pm)
The armory in leeds was a place that I had to go. I know that there are some who will say that there is something morbid about a facination with weaponry. I know that it is indicative of a culture that thinks of violence as an option always. And I know they are probably right. This does not change anything.

I have been facinated with older weaponry for years. It is the story involved I suppose, that and the simple and sometimes beautiful design involved. I defy any one to look at a Katana and not see the craftsmanship involved. There was a time when owning a blade was a sign of a noble man or a rich mearchant. They were designed with a certain ammount of esthetic apeal as well as deadly requirements.

The armory is 5 story's tall. It is huge with a long window at the front. On one side a banner announces that the elephant was the first armored vehicle. It has a picture of an elephant in armor with armored rider.

Inside you have different sections. The biggest is the war section. It takes up 2 floors by it's self. Cannon to rifles to crossbows to swords to spears, it is all here. I saw things I have heard oif but never seen before, like the La Matt. It is a revolver, 41. calbur with 7 shots. It also has an 18 gauge shotgun under the barrel. It was bigger and more rounded than I thought.

Upstairs there is the personal protection exhibit. Here there are a lot of rapiers and pistols. Exhibits concerning police and their tools over the years.

The hunting exhibit was interesting. lots of shotguns and crossbows. Spears and mock up of someone hunting from elephant back.

The asian weapons exhibit was lovely as well. Here was our elephant again. And horse men in chineese and japaneese dress. There was a detail breakdown on the manufacture of the katana. And videos played of zen archery. In the middle of it is the great contradiction of asia but japan in particular. In this room field with instruments of death was a simple austere tea house for the performance of the tea ceremony. A place of peace in a building celebrating conflict.

The drive back to moms place was long and rocking in her beat up car. I slept on the way back. I dreamed of blades and guns, of practicing for for fights I dont really want have mearly to know I could, and I dreamed of moments of peace. If you have not had a cup of tea and a moment of silent contemplation, I recomend it highly. Things make more sence afterwards.


technoir: (Default)
( Feb. 24th, 2003 08:42 pm)
I am as the locals would say knackered. In other words worn out. I spent the day in london mainly at the British Museum. I loved this place and wish I could have spent a week in there. The near east exhibit especially fascinated me for some reason. I got goblinkatie's something shiny at the gift shop.

YEsterday was spent in Ely. It is a lovely little town. The pubs were nice. The Cathedral was beautiful. I am not a christian, but I wanted to attend a service is this place. I understood the power and glory of the medival church much suddenly.

My only real downside so far is the fact that my alergy to cat hair(mom has 6 cats) has trigerred asthma attacks everyday so I have little to no energy. They dont sell primatene mist over the counter here either.

Oh well more later.

technoir: (Dr.Quest)
( Feb. 23rd, 2003 12:21 pm)
Flying is unnatural. It is not something man is supposed to do. That being said I must say that my flight was uncomfortable. First off the seats are not designed for men of substance, that is to say men of any size. So sitting there I felt as though I was badly stuffed. The attendants were always bearing an expression of being bothered. I got the impression that they would love their jobs so much better if not for the pesky passengers always being there. Sadly no sleep was to be had there.

I arrived in London at 7:30 in the morning and met with my mom and her husband. It was a bleary eyed trip back. England may not have invented the fog enshrouded countryside, but they definitely improved the design. Driving back to their place gave me little notion of the look of the countryside. \mom lives in the Fens. A flat land that historically is given to flooding. It is a land with black soil.

The house is a conglomeration. On a lane with a long wall which houses seem to form out of, their house is a 2 story number with a massive garage. You have to view from the rear to see that their are 2 separate buildings. Mom points to one end of the building and says" That part was built in the 1600’s."
turning to another portion "This was added later. Maybe 1800’s" She says it all with a matter of factness born of the being impressed but trying to seem not so. In actuality the Bell House, which of course is the houses name, was constantly added too from the mid 1600’s to the late 1800’s. The back yard of course is the best part. Brick walls and flat stone paths wind around in the back A stone frame at the back frames a view of the Cathedral of Ely, though the fog obscures a lot of that.

We went to a party of my moms friends in Cambridge later that night. I of course was suffering from Jet lag but that’s okay. I got my first ride on the British rail system. This was quite nice. A fast quiet train with seats that were comfortable. It was also relatively cheap as well. When we got to Cambridge we caught a cab. Cars here also not designed for folks like me. I bump my head on every door frame. I felt like I was climbing into a clown car every time. The party was interesting if a little dry for my taste’s. Everyone seemed afraid to make much noise or attract attention. I guess this is that British reserve I hear about from time to time. They were nice folks though. Hope to meet them again when I am not operating at 50%.

Well today I am planning a trip to the cathedral to check it out and tomorrow is London. I will post more later as new stuff pops up.

Well as of friday I am flying out. I get to leave this shores behind me and fly to the older places. The empire may have faded but the kingdom still stands. A land of ancient past. Who history was to great to be contained within simple borders. I am going to spend 10 days visiting with my mom and her husband. They live in a house that was old when this country was founded. The scale of it is a little bewildering when it comes to England and europe in general. Oh well it should be an adventure. They say adventures change you. I could a little change these days.

Meanwhile I face the prospect I could be over seas when the war starts. There is an excelent chance that we will be at war with Iraq sometime next week. I dont enjoy that thought one bit. Oh well I guess i can forget the foolishness of man while I travel roads that even the saxons walked. I think I shal make a point of walking old roads while there. Feel the troubled times of another era maybe.

Who can say.



technoir: (Default)


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