06 September 2010

England Vacation Part 9

Friday, September 3

Off to York to see the York Minster and the many shopping areas around the city centre... very cool to see modern shops in 500 year old buildings. Pizza Hut, Starbucks and McDonald's are hard to find, but when you see them in a very old setting it's kind of neat to see... not that we're looking for these places.

The Minster was neat as it has been rebuilt over the ages, on the same spot... first by Romans, then by Normans then again in Medieval times, each time growing in size.

We left the city of York and drove to the East coast. Whitby Bay. What a beautiful spot. Sandy beaches and beautiful countryside - we drove through North Yorkshire National Park - there was the purple hue of heather for as far as the eye could see in all directions. Incredible. There was also many sheep on the road to avoid, as far as the ewe could see.

The roads are incredibly narrow in places and cars park on the sidewalk. Some homes come right up to the edge of the road, if you're not careful, you can loose a mirror as you pass them. It's also neat to see 20 foot travel trailers being pulled by Audi A4's and Mazda 3's... makes you wonder why we need F350's and Ram 3500 trucks to pull such things back home. Actually, the thought of the ridiculous size of the trucks back home is mind boggling. There is no point, other than compensation for something else, I guess.

The vehicles in England are neat. There are many brands that we don't have back home, including the one I'm driving, a Vauxhall Insignia. There are Fiats (which are all very cool and well designed), Seats, Rovers, MG's, Skodas and Lotus. And, the car brands that are familiar offer up different models than back home.

I think we can learn a lot from the Brits when it comes to automobiles and driving. Trucks (18 wheelers) aren't allowed out of the outside lane and the inside lane is for passing only, use it and then get the hell back in queue! It's very efficient.

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