Slaughter of the Innocents

My host here,laughs a lot. And likes to understand people.He’s seen a lot and laughed a lot and been perplexed by people at times.I think he got it that loose rats might make me scream. Anyway, he’s kind.So he locked the school rats in a cupboard. Just for me. So it was I agreed to take the dissection class.A Rat and I.
The class mentioned before are a great group and we had a lot of fun and overstayed the lesson time.
Mrs Ratty… No,I cannot say I liked you .But you were skinny and much smaller than the giant rats of my imagination. Alas, a skinny expectant one.




Four fetuses

So we learnt a lot.Four amniotic sacs to open,four fetuses to handlens. Limbs, eyes, umbilical cords and placentae with a 1cm crown rump length.
And the class did so much work on the five. We saw kidneys,liver, lungs pancreas,heart and then the budding neurosurgeon stepped in and explored spine and brain


Oh! Mrs Ratty. You will not be forgotten. And neither will your babies. Six young scientists learning and questioning and curious. A high in their academia will be kept for you five.
Nevertheless, Mrs Ratty did raise a paradoxical emotion. Five less rats in the world = good. Killing before the very first breath of such intimately developed fetuses = bad. And the city of York came to mind….in a land with free contraception we abort the fetuses that could populate a city¬† the size of York, every year.Nearly 200,000.Remember the city of York as an annual memorial for those not with us and may we strive harder for wanted and loved pregnancies.

Show and Tell

Sometimes I want to tell people I’m a nun.Quite why a blank look compells me to misbehave I shall leave to the psychologists. But I thought such deception would be obvious from my luminous yellow appearance .Apparently not, as the desk lady at Rievaulx explained and told me about a new nunnery at Wass bank .This prayer thing really has meaning across the ages . Hilda of Whitby was a great pray-er and a highly respected lady of international repute . The rhythm of prayer of monastic life is becoming popular again today .
But I’m tired. Yes ,of couse I am a weeny bit physically tired ,but I’m really tired of my HV Jacket and helmet hair.Blending in is only possible in an almost flowering rape field and I’ve left those behind long ago with Hockneyd Tall Trees . The luminous yellow clashes with gorse and daffodils and is not an attractive evening out in Scarborough jacket. Needs must. It has become a ‘let’s do hand luggage only”type of coat and so how to carry it other than wearing becomes a bulky problem . So my dear coat which I have owned for less than a week Is a sort of friend .It certainly acted as counterpoint to the dark Goths of Whitby and the black robes of Ampleforth . But no wonder Ms Pendleton loves the attention from P&G , as even worse is hair longterm under a helmet.
Helmet hair is horrible .

It was another exceptionally fabulous day today .No honey,but no baked beans (hoorah) and a great coffee breakfast .Prayer in the crypt at Lastingham was an early highlight A really special place to set the wheels of the day in motion .On to always amazing Rievaulx ,the living community at Ampleforth(they practice the Bendedictine Rule of hospitality…great cakes) Byland the beautiful and Newburgh Priory . With such a great cluster of abbeys and a nunnery I was already late .No matter .The people were great today
A Workman for English Heritage took a great interest in my trip checking my itinerary . I needed to confess to him about Nun Monkton. No way are you forgotten, nor will you be ignored NM , but you will be my warm down as Sawley was honoured to be my warm up . You’ll see me coming a mile off Luminously yellow from Ilkley.

And then the ‘that’s embarrassing’ and ‘that’s really interesting’ meeting. Adorned as ever ,Mrs super luminous entered the driveway of Newburgh Priory. With an artistic flourish of the i phone I captured the private house for Facebook. ‘May I help you ?’ said a voice ‘We are closed ‘. Disappointed , I nerdishly told him my mission . Alas , it remained closed but I challenged him , in a manner reminiscent of A.AMilne’s tumbling bear “Are you perchance Mr Wombwell?” and he was . Not such a strange question when Byland boasts the Wombwell Arms and the family bought Byland and Newburgh at the dissolution of the monasteries . I was happy he had not read my rhubarb blog where I clearly dislike the name WW.Once upon a time the family owned the coal mines in Wwell ( must I write that again) and had enough money to buy monasteries. I’ve promised to come back on an open day. As Mr W said , it is far older and more important historically than Castle Howard
On to Malton priory If all my acting mothers had been with me I could have reverted to child and queried our ETA in ‘are we there yet ?’ whine. 20 miles seems further in the afternoon than morning .It was an ever changing altitude ride but such amazing sights to see.Violets,primroses,woodpeckers, deer ,owl rabbits , woodruff , celendine at my feet .Sadly , two dead badgers .
Show and tell could go on and on and on…
Thank you for your support .A helpful direction giving taxi driver gave me sponsorship money. The kindness of strangers Thank God