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Old 03-28-2012, 07:29 AM   #41
AnnaS
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I am in awe in all of it also (did I say that right?).

Absolutely beautiful and amazing pictures. I could sit and stare at those views for hours. Thank you again for sharing.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:10 AM   #42
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Off to Jersey…..
As I often tell people, “You know how there’s New York, so there’s an old York over in England, and there’s a New Hampshire, so there must be an old Hampshire? Well, have you ever wondered where old Jersey is?” That’s usually met with, “I never thought of that”. Ok, how about Jersey cows & Guernsey cows?

While both part of "The Channel Islands", Jersey and Guernsey are politically separate from each other. Size wise, Jersey is around 46 square miles, so a half again as big as Guernsey. With nearly 100,000 inhabitants, the population is also about 1.5x that of Guernsey.

We only had 2 days on Jersey, with one of them being dedicated to family reunion activities. Shortly after arrival, we headed to Elizabeth Castle which is on a tidal island. Again, a centuries-old fortification that’s seen use as recently as WWII. Rather silly if you think about it. These castles were built do defend the port, but they were also where leaders would seek refuge during times of war. And apparently the custom was that if you held the castle, you held the island. Nevermind that the castle is rather far removed from the rest of the island. Oh well.

Elizabeth Castle from the ferry as we headed into port


From the shore. At low tide, you can walk across the bay to the castle. Tide was coming in as we arrived.


When the tide is high, you can make your way via amphibious vehicle. Charming Betty seemed….well… charming enough to get us there.


For a better look, here's Betty’s sister Nancy


We arrived in time for a live fire demonstration of the canon. OMG, what a bang that thing made firing 1lb of powder! (no ball though)


From near the top, looking back at St Helier. Not nearly as picturesque as St Peter Port as the elevation change from the shore is much more gradual


Looking up at the castle. See the nicely rounded bit of concrete up top? Yup. Nazi's again. They REALLY liked to make stuff out of reinforced concrete.


Out along the breakwall on what used to be a separate tidal island is an ancient hermitage


We sat for a while out on the breakwall, watching the waves come in. Ahhhh…..


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Old 03-29-2012, 08:10 AM   #43
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Back on the shore, the tide had come in a bit more. I feel sorry for the people who walked over and didn’t look at the sign telling them when the path would again be covered by water


With a limited time, we made our way over to the Jersey War Tunnels. Seems as though the Nazi’s liked to build things out of concrete, and they liked to have tunnels dug. This is a large tunnel network that was built as an underground hospital, but never fully completed. Today it’s a museum that walks you through WWII from the perspective of the channel islands, It would take a full day to read everything they have in there. Well worth a visit if you’re interested.






An unfinished part of the tunnel. To imagine having to dig this out of granite. Wow.


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Old 03-29-2012, 08:22 AM   #44
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The following day (family reunion) included visits to a few sites on the island. First a rare trip into the States Chamber (akin to our Capitol where Congress meets) to see the Royal Mace. Maces are symbolic, even in our own governments in the US and Canada. Many houses of government aren’t officially in session without the proper presence of their mace in the chamber as a representation of the body’s authority.

History lesson warning!
The 1640s & 50s was the time of the English Civil War between the Royalists and the Parliamentarians. The Stuart Monarchy, Oliver Cromwell, Roundheads, Cavaliers, etc… if you recall that from world history. Not the War of the Roses, that was royal infighting some 100+ years earlier.

Charles I was beheaded in England in 1649. Charles II was in exile in Jersey at that time and he was proclaimed King of England on Jersey in 1649 upon his father’s death, a full 11 years before the same recognition was given to him in England at the conclusion of the civil wars. During that time is when Oliver Cromwell ruled as “Lord Protector” of England.

This mace was given to the Isle of Jersey in 1663 in gratitude for hospitality given to Charles II during his exile. It was also around this time that via James II, brother of Charles and Duke of York, a plot of land on the West side of the Atlantic was given to George Carteret and John Berkeley, both staunch supporters of the crown through the wars. Hint: We call it something newer than just Jersey


Shhhh...... after taking a video of the presentation where we were told of the mace's history and significance, we were sternly told by some usher that pictures were not permitted within the States Chamber. Whoops. So keep this a secret. LOL

From http://www.thisisjersey.com/island-l...ge/royal-mace/
Quote:
It consists of 11 pieces made of silver gilt, is almost 4 ft 10 ins long, weighs 237 ounces (14 lb 13 oz) but bears no hallmarks.

Engraved on its foot is a Latin inscription, which translates: ‘Not all doth he deem worthy of such a reward. Charles II, King of Great Britain, France and Ireland, as a proof of his royal affection towards the Isle of Jersey (in which he has been twice received in safety when he was excluded from the remainder of his dominions), has willed that this Royal Mace should be consecrated to posterity and has ordered that hereafter it shall be carried before the Bailiffs, in perpetual remembrance of their fidelity not only to his august father Charles I but to His Majesty during the fury of the civil wars, when the Island was maintained by the illustrious Philip and George de Carteret, Knights, Bailiffs and Governors of the said Island.’

The mace is carried before the Bailiff at the sittings of the Royal Court and meetings of the Assembly of the States of Jersey. In the court and the States the mace is placed upright in a socket in front of the Bailiff’s desk.

Ok, back to more pictures of neat places…

We went on a walking tour of Mount Orqueil Castle (Or-gay). Yes, I know what you’re thinking, “Finally a castle that looks like a castle!
Construction began in 1204 after Normandy was re-taken by the French. They kept adding onto and changing the castle to keep up with the latest weaponry. Defending against canons is a little different than defending against bow & arrow. Eventually, the weaponry of the day became capable of pummeling the fort from the adjacent hillside and the fort was deemed obsolete. Fortunately, they didn't take the stone for other purposes as often would happen.








From the top:


High tide or low tide, any guesses?


Extra double bonus points to the person who can tell me what the purpose of this building/room was


Hint: It’s that short, flat-top building in the middle with the arched doorway.
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Old 03-29-2012, 10:10 AM   #45
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Again...WOW! GREAT TR and fabulous photos/information.

Not sure if I said this in an earlier post. I was forced to take 4 years of the French language way back when, and have never been fond of France. (I think my distain has to do with being forced to take French, coupled with my English/Irish heritage!) Your TR has 200% made me want to go to France! Thanks!
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Old 03-29-2012, 10:41 AM   #46
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I am amazed at each one of the low tide boat pictures you post. Everytime they shock me to see them like that. Great TR.
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Old 03-29-2012, 10:52 AM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovindisney View Post
Again...WOW! GREAT TR and fabulous photos/information.

Not sure if I said this in an earlier post. I was forced to take 4 years of the French language way back when, and have never been fond of France. (I think my distain has to do with being forced to take French, coupled with my English/Irish heritage!) Your TR has 200% made me want to go to France! Thanks!
I took 2 years of French and remember only a little. I may have said already, but I always enjoyed the irony of being able to say Je ne parles pas Francais in a relatively French (vs American) accent. In St Malo, I said good morning to the front desk clerk in French, then told him I didn't speak French. He then responded by asking if I spoke a different language, again in French. I just replied with "English?" in my typical accent-free midwesterner tone. His response was in rather broken English that he did, but not much.

I've been in other countries and enjoyed working through the language barrier. One time, and it sounds like a joke, but I was the American as an American, a Korean, and a South African walked into a bar in Brasil. Hardly anyone in there spoke English, and certainly not our server. We managed to order beer & pizza just fine though. Ironically, most of the music was US songs in English.
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Old 03-29-2012, 12:32 PM   #48
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This trip report is just awesom! I had thought of the Channel Islands on my own, to end my Normandy trip, but wasn't leaning in that direction, just wasn't sure what was out there. Ok, I'm convinced. Will try to add a short visit to the end of the trip. This report has been far more helpful than any guidebook I've read! Thanks so much.
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Old 03-29-2012, 02:47 PM   #49
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what a fun trip report to read. you learn a little and see gorgeous pics.

The low tide boat pics are the funniest.
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Old 03-29-2012, 04:24 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottinbx View Post
what a fun trip report to read. you learn a little and see gorgeous pics.

The low tide boat pics are the funniest.
Doh! Sorry, I'll try to switch things up so you learn a lot and less space is wasted with the photos

I'm just happy that it's actually being read. I've been concerned that I've been too verbose.

The low tide boats cracked me up, too. Clearly you learn to plan ahead for both casting off and returning to port.
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