Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Watergate

One thing I like about my city is the way it is so easy to step into the past. Beside almost every shop entrance there are steps up or down - and each direction generally uncovers something interesting: a Roman hypocaust behind the till at 'Spud-U-Like' for instance, or behind a plate of glass a short platform leading to medieval vaults.

Every month or so I meet a friend in the Watergate - one of the old pubs close to the centre. The walls are of blocks of sandstone, and the place is only ever dimly lit with candles and fairy lights. I don't know why we meet there, really. I like it well enough but since he's a writer too we often exchange manuscripts and books and struggle to see. So mostly we end up talking and yesterday we had a two hour lunch sorting out the publishing industry, the world economy, and how I don't quite know how to work my camera...well, we didn't sort out that one, actually. The instruction book is incomprehensible - even Hodmandod Senior can make no sense of it.

© Alan Wall 2009 :-)

Even so, he managed to take a couple of good photos while I was busy at the bar.


Blogger Kay said...

I can only imagine what it is like to be surrounded by all that history of humankind ... the first European settlers arrived here a mere two hundred years ago.

Thu Aug 20, 10:24:00 am  
Blogger Al said...

Hmm Chester, one of those many English towns on my to visit list.
Anywhere you can see bits of amphitheatre, or hypocaust, gets me drooling at the thought. Sorry for the mess but I like old rocks.

Thu Aug 20, 10:24:00 am  
Blogger Debra Hamel said...

I love this, both the candid glimpse of you and the bar itself.

Thu Aug 20, 02:54:00 pm  
Blogger Jud said...

That is a fantastic looking place! When you mentioned Watergate, my mind shifted to the 70's and the hijinxs of a past US president and his cronies.

Thu Aug 20, 03:45:00 pm  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Yes, I do appreciate it, Kay!

I feel exactly the same, Al. I find it incredible to think I am touching the same rock ancient men touched.

Debra: It's quite funny really. I'd taken in the camera to take a picture of my friend, but instead he ended up taking a picture of me. I think it was almost a mistake.

Yes, Jud - when I gave the piece a title that flashed through my mind too. This palce is on a street called Water gate because it is on the road that used to lead to the city gate that led on to the river. I wonder where the 'other ' watergate comes from...probably can trace back to a similar origin.

Thu Aug 20, 07:47:00 pm  
Blogger Susan said...

Did you notice the chap on the left eyeing you? (You need to enlarge the picture to fully appreciate it :)

I love dark, cavernous places like that...just like my living room!

Fri Aug 21, 04:35:00 am  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Heh heh - not in those trousers I think. I had always suspected they were unflattering, and now I know they are.

Very funny about your living room too - does it not have that spectacular view?

Fri Aug 21, 05:38:00 am  
Blogger Susan said...

We do have a spectacular view, but I also love the cool, dark cave atmosphere of our living room. Hubby, a sun lover, calls me a "slug under a plank" (lovingly, mind you!) I prefer the filtered light of woodland and that's pretty much what I have here - chocolate ice-cream walls and dark woods offset by darker jewel colours. No glare at all.

Sat Aug 22, 05:07:00 am  

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