The Black Gate

I awoke abruptly at 1am in the morning to the sound of what I soon realized was the fire alarm going off. We both leaped out of bed just as the alarm stopped ringing so I returned to bed and when I was satisfied it was a false alarm I went back to sleep. I suspect it was one of the party goers thinking it amusing to set the fire alarm off. A little while later I awoke to the noise of loud voices outside the room; they went on for a long period of time which was most unwelcome. I dropped off to sleep only to be awoken again by more loud voices outside the room. It was one of those nights…

Morning came around all too soon but this didn’t stop us enjoying our breakfast even though we had chosen to meet earlier than on previous days. The service in the breakfast room was rather chaotic and not running quite as smoothly as we had become accustomed to.

St Mary's Cathedral

After breakfast we strolled into town to show mum the highlights of Newcastle city centre. We walked through the Black Gate and into town, passing through Central Arcade before spending some time in Waterstones. We then made our way across town to St Mary’s Cathedral which I hadn’t visited before. I enjoyed the Cathedral even though it is currently undergoing work around the windows so workmen and scaffolding were present. Next to the Cathedral is an excellent bookshop where I was unable to resist buying a book. I could have spent more time in both the Cathedral and bookshop but my companions seemed in a hurry. After I had purchased the book we enjoyed a cup of tea in the Cathedral tea-shop. They had some rather delicious cakes on the counter but we all resisted temptation.

Autumn Leaves by JD

After our tea break we returned to the hotel to wait for JD whom we had arranged to meet for lunch. He came bearing gifts (two lovely paintings), one for me and one for my mum (thank you JD :-) ). We went to the nearby St Nicholas’ Cathedral for lunch where the service in the tea-shop was even more chaotic than service we had experienced during breakfast. Sadly there was only one cherry scone which mum insisted that I had. We stayed and chatted for a while but got the impression that they wanted to close the tea-shop so we left and walked along Amen Corner to the back of the Cathedral so that mum could see the Vampire Rabbit. She didn’t immediately notice it but when she did she exclaimed, ‘What’s That’.

The Vampire Rabbit

We walked back through the town and past the Mog On The Tyne tea-shop, before parting company with JD. He made his way home and we visited The Lit & Phil library before returning to Waterstones pick up a book I had seen there earlier in the day. We intended to have a cup of tea whilst there but unfortunately all the tables were full so we made our way to Costa instead. By this time it was time to return to the hotel to freshen up for dinner. We had a very nice meal in Sabotini’s Italian Restaurant which mum decided was meal of the weekend and I couldn’t disagree. All too soon we returned to the hotel for a last nightcap there and to pack our cases for the return journey home the next day.

The Black Gate

22 Comments CherryPie on Nov 3rd 2015

22 Responses to “Newcastle – Day Four”

  1. rusty duck says:

    I’m picking up a theme with your travels… breakfasts don’t always go according to plan!

  2. Chrysalis says:

    “Wot, behind the rabbit?” </em"

    I would've advised running in the cathedral and grabbing "The Holy Hand Grenade," Monty Python style, but it appears the back of the cathedral is actually what the rabbit is "guarding?" Did anyone ever find out exactly why there’s a “vampire rabbit” on the back of the cathedral? lol

    Forget the Holy Hand Grenade anyway, the interior of that cathedral is breathtaking, we want to leave it just as it is :)

    I read below that you don’t use flash in cathedrals, just the lighting already present – especially if that is the case here, Cherie, seriously – you’ve outdone yourself on that interior shot. I honestly think that’s one of the best photos you’ve ever taken – solemn but warm at the same time, light piercing the darkness. (I honestly didn’t notice the scaffolding until you said something, the dramatic lighting takes center stage and draws the eye.)

    Nice choice to put JD’s painting right below that photo – his painting sort of carries the same “solemn warmth,” only with more emphasis on the “warmth” in the intensity of the autumn red, doesn’t it?

    Very well done, JD – to you both in fact – evoking more than one tone or emotion from the viewer from a single piece of artwork is no easy feat :)

    • Chrysalis says:

      PS – Aak, I didn’t close the italics code properly, it should’ve ended after the first sentence, a quote from Monty Python and The Holy Grail, italicizing again only the word “why” in the next paragraph.

      Sorry about that, I was multitasking – also the reason I’ve been sitting on your blog for the last hour, in case you were wondering ;)

      • CherryPie says:

        Thank you, I am glad you like the photograph :-) I am sure I will go back to St Mary’s next time I visit Newcastle.

        JD’s painting is lovely with the bright autumn leaves. My photo of it doesn’t really di it justice.

  3. ubermouth says:

    I absolutely LOVE that last photo! I love the misty quality that the arc lights creates. Is that your hotel?

    • CherryPie says:

      The first and last photo are of the same place. It is the Black Gate which was one part of the walled defences of Newcastle. When I was taking these pictures I had my back to the hotel that we stayed in.

      I too rather like the lighting effect in the last photo.

  4. Ginnie says:

    I kept waiting to hear you say at the end that there really WAS a fire at your hotel after all. :) But thankfully, all came to pass without too much of a hitch, it appears. I love that your mum gets to share some of these outings with you.

  5. Alan Rolfe says:

    I sympathise with your disturbed night in the hotel; some people are so thoughtless and inconsiderate. I always carry some very good earplugs with me. I like the account of your day; tea shops seem to feature quite a lot which appeals to me, too! I like the Vampire Rabbit :)

    • CherryPie says:

      I normally like the sounds of the city but on this occasion I could have done with some earplugs!

      Tea-shops always feature on our days out ;-)

  6. The Vampire Rabbit looks like Tootless from “How To Train Your Dragon”! ;)

  7. JD says:

    You are doing a fine job there on behalf of Newcastle and Northumberland Tourist Boards.
    Perhaps you should send them an invoice? You never know, they might pay it! :)

  8. Everyone needs a little bit of wake up call.

  9. ubermouth says:

    Seeing your photographs makes me homesick for England.

  10. J_on_tour says:

    The Lit and Phil is impressive, only been in there once for a quick look round in the half time break of a jazz night downstairs.
    Love that head on photo of the Vampire Rabbit and pleased to hear you made it to Sabatinis. I can’t remember if I discussed that with you on here the last time you came to Newcastle.

    • CherryPie says:

      The Lit and Phil is faboulous architecturally and of course we browsed around the books. In addition to the library part they have a good selection of books on Newcastle for sale. If I had gone there first I many have picked one or two of them up to guide me around some of the less advertised sites of Newcastle.

      Maybe next time ;-)