Well and truly stoned…

288DE67600000578-3077901-image-a-2_1431420080114Bronze Age stone circle ‘found’ for the first time in 100 years on Dartmoor – and it could be older than Stonehenge.  An impressive stone circle in Dartmoor is the first to be discovered in a century, archaeologists have revealed. The ancient circle would have formed part of a ‘sacred arc’ of sites on the moor, suggesting a high level of coordination between Bronze Age communities. And the remote location and sheer ambition of the arc suggests careful planning went into its construction, experts said.2894DF5300000578-3077901-image-a-3_1431422144535 The circle, that sits on Sittaford Tor, in Devon, is the highest circle in southern England at 1,722 ft (525 metres) above sea level, and the second largest on Dartmoor with a diameter of 112 ft (34 metres).

It’s hardly just been found – thousands of Bootneck’s have yomped across Dartmoor and bivvied out around each of her Tor’s since 1960. It is fair to say archeologists have just realised the stones were toppled over in the early Bronze age, a theory now proven using carbon dating technology. On more than one occasion, I’ve parked my weary buttocks on one of the stones, and flashed up a small petrol stove to make big eats – followed by a wet of tea accompanied by a packet of dead fly biscuits…  Aye. 

“Muck and money go together”

281BFBFC00000578-3047560-image-a-125_1430238711509Broken toilet leads to 2,000 years of history: Incredible find unearths ancient tomb, Roman granary, and etchings from the Knights Templar. 

A search for a sewage pipe beneath an Italian restaurant yielded two centuries worth of history. Lucian Faggiano bought the building in Lecce, Puglia in the south of Italy and had planned to turn it into a ‘trattoria’ – but renovations were put on hold when he discovered a toilet on the site was blocked.  

While attempting to fix the toilet he dug into a Messapian tomb built 2,000 years ago, where he discovered a Roman granary, a Franciscan chapel, and even etchings thought to be made by the Knights Templar. The cavernous property has since been turned into a museum so visitors can easily view the remains.

We have a saying here in Yorkshire “Where there’s muck there’s brass” which, more often than not – is very true…      Yours Aye.

“Bugger that for a game of soldiers!”

A damn close run thing: 200 years on, this amazingly restored model shows the full extent of the Battle of Waterloo – and how many did not survive the day. An enormous diorama which shows the full extent of the Battle of Waterloo has gone on display to mark the 200th anniversary of the conflict.      Click on pic’s to enlarge.2761238900000578-3030264-image-m-8_1428539949900The model contains more than 30,000 figures, and illustrates all the key moments of the battle which allowed the Duke of Wellington to defeat Napoleon’s forces. 275D9ACC00000578-3030264-image-m-33_1428493292285It was built in the 1970s, but fell into disrepair before being restored to its former glory just in time for the battle’s bicentenary, which falls on June 18 of this year.

You’d need the patience of a saint to dust and assemble the whole diorama; “Bugger that for a game of soldiers!”  I ain’t no saint – though I ain’t no devil neither…    Yours Aye.

What have the Roman’s done for us?

What have the Roman’s done for us – apart from sanitation, medicine, indoor heating, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh-water system, and public health! It appears they also gave us strains of tuberculosis, according to Geneticists at the University of Warwick!   With apologies to Monty Python, and Brian; “Who is not the Messiah – he’s a very naughty boy.”       Yours Aye.

The little dictator – French of course

Eastlake - Napoleon on the BellerophonNapoleon was the real winner of Waterloo… claim the French! Re-enactment set to mark bi-centenary will ignore history. It is not so much a bid to rewrite history as a blatant attempt at match-rigging. For the French are claiming that Napoleon – not Wellington – was the true hero of Waterloo. 

Napoleon a dejected prisoner on HMS Bellerophon. (aka ‘Billy Ruffian’)

In a reconstruction to mark this year’s bicentenary of the battle, they plan to ignore the fact that he emerged utterly defeated.  Instead, they want to portray the French emperor as the winner over a ‘frightful’ English nobody. But the sabre-rattling ahead of the commemorations in Belgium this summer was quickly dismissed by historians. French re-enactment  society claim Napoleon was the real winner at the Battle of Waterloo      Click on pics to enlarge…Wellingtons-squares-2Of Interest Perhaps: Wellington’s use of concealed infantry squares was the undoing of Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo. The main usage of the squares were the hollow formations throughout the Napoleonic wars, sometimes the formation could also be more rectangular. Each side of the square would have a minimum of two ranks (usually four in the case of Wellingtons) of infantry with bayonets fixed on their single shot muskets. The first rank would be kneeling with the muskets shining bayonets pointing at an angle of around 45 degree. The second and/or third ranks would be stood with the bayonet fixed muskets to the shoulder taking aim and ready for the order to open fire in rank order. The third and/or fourth ranks would be reloading the muskets for the ranks in front.Wellingtons-squares-1Such a square of this type would require around 500 soldiers, the officers with a reserve force would be positioned in the centre, the reserve force would be utilised to fill gaps that might appear in the squares, and these squares would also be very tightly packed shoulder to shoulder. The infantry would wait until an advancing cavalry was at a range of 30 metres and then the commanders would give the order to open fire, the idea was to try ensure the fallen cavalry caused problems with the cavalry behind, therefore slowing the advance and allowing the infantry to change muskets for the loaded one.

‘Wellington’s infantry squares at Waterloo with stood 11 cavalry charges.’      Yours Aye.

‘Old Nosey’ the ‘Iron Duke’

The Duke of Wellington’s heroes finally win Waterloo memorial on Belgian battlefield – 100 years after the French placed one. It was, perhaps, Britain’s greatest military victory – the ferocious confrontation that finally ended the tyrannical reign of Napoleon Bonaparte.24204EF300000578-2882154-image-a-10_1419117293525Yet 200 years after the Battle of Waterloo, astonishingly there is still no memorial on the site to commemorate the remarkable bravery of the British troops who fought and died there – although there is a memorial to the defeated French. Now that injustice is finally about to be righted. A monument designed by sculptress Vivien Mallock will be opened on the battlefield in Belgium next year.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe work will feature two British soldiers and quotes from the Duke of Wellington, who led the British forces, one reading ‘Next to a battle lost the greatest misery is a battle gained’, the other saying, ‘Never was a place more fiercely assaulted nor better defended’. Standing just over 6ft high, the memorial commemorates the moment when a predominantly British contingent of 4,000 soldiers defended the pivotal location of Hougoumont Farm and its surroundings from a vastly superior French force.800px-Waterloo_derniers_combattantsThe lack of an official memorial for British troops has been a sore point for decades and has fuelled speculation that successive British governments and the Belgium authorities have been reluctant to push the issue for fear of upsetting the French. By contrast, the French have had a memorial on the site (above) called The Wounded Eagle, since 1904.Wellington

 Wellington’s heroes finally win Waterloo memorial on Belgian battlefield

‘Old Nosey’ the ‘Iron Duke’ can stop turning in his grave at the slight cast upon the Coldstream Guards. And about bloody time too – 200 years indeed!       Yours Aye.

The failed gunpowder Plot of 1605

Guy_FawkesGuy Fawkes (13 April 1570 – 31 January 1606), also known as Guido Fawkes, the name he adopted while fighting for the Spanish in the Low Countries, was a member of a group of provincial English Catholics who planned the failed Gunpowder Plot of 1605.

Fawkes was born and educated in York. His father died when Fawkes was eight years old, after which his mother married a recusant Catholic. Fawkes later converted to Catholicism and left for the continent, where he fought in the Eighty Years’ War on the side of Catholic Spain against Protestant Dutch reformers. He travelled to Spain to seek support for a Catholic rebellion in England but was unsuccessful. He later met Thomas Wintour, with whom he returned to England.800px-Gunpowder_Plot_conspirators
‘A contemporary engraving of eight of the thirteen conspirators, Fawkes is third from the right.’ Wintour introduced Fawkes to Robert Catesby, who planned to assassinate King James I and restore a Catholic monarch to the throne. The plotters secured the lease to an undercroft beneath the House of Lords, and Fawkes was placed in charge of the gunpowder they stockpiled there. Prompted by the receipt of an anonymous letter, the authorities searched Westminster Palace during the early hours of 5 November, and found Fawkes guarding the explosives. Over the next few days, he was questioned and tortured, and eventually he broke. Immediately before his execution on 31 January, Fawkes jumped from the scaffold where he was to be hanged and broke his neck, thus avoiding the agony of the mutilation that followed.Guy_fawkes_henry_perronet_briggs
‘The Discovery of the Gunpowder Plot and the Taking of Guy Fawkes’ (Circa 1823)
 Guy Fawkes became synonymous with the Gunpowder Plot, the failure of which has been commemorated in Britain since 5 November 1605. His effigy is traditionally burned on a bonfire, commonly accompanied by a firework display.

English Folk Verse (c.1870)
* The Fifth of November *

Remember, remember!
The fifth of November,
The Gunpowder treason and plot;
I know of no reason
Why the Gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot!
Guy Fawkes and his companions
Did the scheme contrive,
To blow the King and Parliament
All up alive.
Threescore barrels, laid below,
To prove old England’s overthrow.
But, by God’s providence, him they catch,
With a dark lantern, lighting a match!
A stick and a stake
For King James’s sake!
If you won’t give me one,
I’ll take two,
The better for me,
And the worse for you.
A rope, a rope, to hang the Pope,
A penn’orth of cheese to choke him,
A pint of beer to wash it down,
And a jolly good fire to burn him.
Holloa, boys! holloa, boys! make the bells ring!
Holloa, boys! holloa boys! God save the King!
Hip, hip, hooor-r-r-ray!

The black Yorkshire country side has suddenly come alive with bursting fireworks, and blazing bonfires – the light scent of cordite and wood smoke is now gently falling on a cold still night. One of my favourite nights, and I’m spoilt for choice as every direction offers something different. The three canines could care less, but I’m up for watching it…     Yours Aye.

Eve of Saint Crispin’s Day

We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother…

WESTMORELAND. O that we now had here
But one ten thousand of those men in England
That do no work to-day!

KING. What’s he that wishes so?
My cousin Westmoreland? No, my fair cousin;
If we are mark’d to die, we are enow
To do our country loss; and if to live,
The fewer men, the greater share of honour.
God’s will! I pray thee, wish not one man more.
By Jove, I am not covetous for gold,
Nor care I who doth feed upon my cost;
It yearns me not if men my garments wear;
Such outward things dwell not in my desires.
But if it be a sin to covet honour,
I am the most offending soul alive.
No, faith, my coz, wish not a man from England.
God’s peace! I would not lose so great an honour
As one man more methinks would share from me
For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more!
Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host,
That he which hath no stomach to this fight,
Let him depart; his passport shall be made,
And crowns for convoy put into his purse;
We would not die in that man’s company
That fears his fellowship to die with us.
This day is call’d the feast of Crispian.
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam’d,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say “To-morrow is Saint Crispian.”
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say “These wounds I had on Crispian’s day.”
Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
But he’ll remember, with advantages,
What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words-
Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester-
Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb’red.
This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne’er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remembered-
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition;
And gentlemen in England now-a-bed
Shall think themselves accurs’d they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin’s day.

By golly my blood is pumping, and my loins are girded… Which reminds me; It’s also that time of year again when the clocks go back 1 hour at 0200 hrs on the last Sunday in October (26th.) Greenwich Mean Time begins.      Yours Aye. 

Ancient underground car-park

A ‘Remarkable and rare’ 2,200-year-old chariot unearthed in Melton Mowbray…      A ‘remarkable and rare’ Iron Age chariot has been uncovered during an excavation of an ancient hill-fort in Leicestershire.1413300662160_wps_6_Archaeologists_have_unearA single chariot lynch pin is shown from three angles, showing the intricate decoration at the ends. Archaeologists discovered the bronze chariot fittings, along with horse care tools from 2nd or 3rd Century BC, at an ancient fort in Burrough Hill. Experts believe the chariot was either dismantled or never built, and would have belonged to a high-status individual such as a noble or warrior. The archaeologists who found the treasures are said to be shell-shocked by the enormity of their discovery. The decorated fittings from the 2,200-year-old Iron Age chariot appear to have been buried as a religious offering.1413300755571_wps_11_Archaeologists_have_unearThe discovery was made by students from the University of Leicester during their ongoing excavation of the Burrough Hill Iron Age hill-fort (pictured), near Melton Mowbray. ‘Remarkable and rare’ 2,200-year-old chariot unearthed in Melton Mowbray, Leicester 

We’ve all done it before! Taken on a project and never got round to finishing it, and there it sits in the garage/shed/workshop just gathering dust (or in some cases buried underground for 2,200 years!) So if that’s the case, what’s in your garage/shed/workshop that you haven’t gotten round too just yet? Come on, shoulders back, chest out, chin up, and speak in a loud clear voice so we can all hear…   Yours Aye.

My mountain bike has been sat in pieces for several months, which I keep making feeble excuses over for not re-building!  Six ‘Hail Mary’s’ and Four ‘Our Father’s’ as penance!  (It’s a Catholic thing) 😉

Robin Hood was a Yorkshireman…

article-1082332-024FC8A8000005DC-216_239x331Was Robin Hood from YORKSHIRE? Outlaw has more ties to the county than Nottinghamshire, claims expert… Everything you know about the legend of Robin Hood may be wrong, after experts have claimed the outlaw was in fact a Yorkshireman. Refuting centuries-old reports that the villain lived in Sherwood Forest in Nottingham, a curator from a Doncaster museum states evidence suggests otherwise. She claims literary references put Robin Hood firmly in Barnsdale, Doncaster and Pontefract throughout his life – and he was also buried in Kirklees, West Yorkshire.

‘It’s more than likely that Robin Hood was a Yorkshireman,’ said Carolyn Dalton, from Doncaster Museum and Art Gallery. ‘Robin Hood’s links to Yorkshire are far stronger historically, the oldest and most detailed stories give details of the north Doncaster and Pontefract area. ‘I think over the years Yorkshire hasn’t made much of the connection. ‘In terms of where Robin and his men lived, history points to Barnsdale near Doncaster.’1410262125088_wps_11_Kirklees_Priory_jpgAn epitaph recorded in 1702 claims Robin Hood was buried in Kirklees, in West Yorkshire, where the legend claims he was killed, supposedly by the Sheriff of Nottingham. This grave (pictured above) dates to 1247.   ‘Robin Hood & Little John’ from the 50’s British series.Robin Hood 769

Legend has always stated the leader of the Merry Men originated from Sherwood Forest – the stomping ground of his archenemy, the Sheriff of Nottingham. But Yorkshire historians claim the earliest stories put his origins firmly in Barnsdale – on the border between South and West Yorkshire near Doncaster. The experts argue Yorkshire boasts more points of historical reference than any other county, including the site where Robin Hood’s remains are believed to be buried at Kirklees Priory, near Brighouse, West Yorkshire.         Was Robin Hood from YORKSHIRE? 

‘Oh Gawd’ please let this be so, as I have a good oppo who I served alongside who accredited Robin Hood with every thing he did “As Nottinghamshire lads – we were brought up with the legend of a true honest folk hero – one of Nottingham’s finest!” Oh to be the first to burst his childhood bubble (I’ve already mailed him the link as he now resides abroad.)    Yours Aye.

RMS Titanic ‘lunch is served!’

Man converts his garden shed into a replica of the Titanic’s dining room. (And it’s so posh he ate his Christmas dinner there.) For most people, the prospect of eating Christmas dinner while holed up in the garden shed would not be an enticing one. But for John Siggins, 62, the experience last year was one of luxury after he transformed his shed into a precise imitation of the dining room found on the Titanic.1407932276250_wps_5_PIC_FROM_CATERS_NEWS_PICT

1407932507911_Image_galleryImage_PIC_FROM_CATERS_NEWS_PICTThe railway engineer, from Ripley, Derbyshire, has spent up to £10,000 turning the tiny structure into a replica of the lavish room – made famous in the 1997 film about the doomed ship. He has claimed that his creation could be worth ten times that to the right collector.

The corrugated-iron shed features wooden panels, chairs and dining sets from the ship’s sister liner, the Olympic – all of which Mr Siggins has collected over 25 years. Assembled completely by hand, the idea for the project first came about after he was gifted an original blanket handed to a rescued passenger when the ship sunk in 1912.

Mr Siggins was at a library researching a family who had been on the Titanic when an elderly man sitting next to him recognised the name of a survivor he was reading about – Julia Cavendish. The same name was printed on an old blanket that the man unwittingly had at home – which he had acquired through inheritance. As soon as the man mentioned the link, Mr Siggins offered to buy the blanket. Great British Eccentric builds replica RMS Titanic dining room in his garden shed. 1407932290602_wps_6_PIC_FROM_CATERS_NEWS_PICTMr Siggins – a word to the wise mate, ‘you’re improperly dressed, and you need a hobby that gets you out more often.’            Yours Aye.

“Pass the Mustard, please.”

Colman’s Mustard celebrates 200 years on Britain’s tables with fascinating archive of photos and adverts showing how it went from strength to strength.article-2717690-204CA2AA00000578-547_964x427An 1884 Victorian label: A staple of the British kitchen is celebrating its anniversary this year. Archivist’s research reveals the 200 year history of Colman’s Mustard. A fascinating archive documenting how Colman’s Mustard impacted on the people living and working in Norwich has been uncovered to mark the 200th anniversary of the product. The gallery of vintage pictures which shows the rise of the condiment to a favourite kitchen staple includes photographs, posters, leaflets and articles dating back to 1814. The popular product was founded by former flour miller Jeremiah Colman and sold as a powder for people to mix into a paste.      Colman’s recipes…article-2717690-204C9DD300000578-580_964x805Hand tinted glass plate showing thousands of workers leaving Norfolk’s Carrow works in 1900: The gallery of vintage pictures dates back to 1814.  The first newspaper advert for the family firm from the time makes up part of the archive. It reads: ‘Jeremiah Colman, having taken the Stock and Trade lately carried on by Mr Edward James, respectfully informs his customers and the public in general that he will continue the manufacturing of mustard.’ His nephew, James, joined the company in 1823, and the firm was rebranded as J. and J. Colman. Employees worked long hours but had access to a clothing club, school and an abundance of leisure activities. Colman’s Mustard celebrates 200 yearsarticle-2717690-204CC43800000578-777_964x1647I remember my Dad letting me taste a bit off the tip of his finger when I was around 5-years-old; I approved wholeheartedly, and from that day forth any meat placed before me has a dollop upon it. It travelled with me throughout my service life to enhance 24 hour ration packs, as well as provide back up in various dining halls. In 20 minutes time it will be spread across my Aberdeen Angus beef and herb sausages. Française namby-pamby moutarde is banned from my humble abode.             “Pass the Mustard, please.” Yours Aye.

Viking broadsword guaranteed bad luck

Broadword2.JPGIs this England’s unluckiest sword? Viking broadsword was on the losing side of four of history’s greatest battles… and now it could be yours for just £120,000.      Click pic to enlarge

An unlucky sword used by the losers of the Battles of Stamford Bridge, Hastings, Bannockburn and Boroughbridge over a period of 250 years is expected to reach £120,000 at auction. It is believed that the 11th century broadsword was originally carried to Britain by Viking raiders when it was captured, only to be lost a few weeks later at the Battle of Hastings in 1066. In 1314, the sword was carried to Scotland at the Battle of Bannockburn, where the owner was forced to retreat having witnessed his nephew axed to death.

However, the cursed sword’s bad luck continued at the Battle of Boroughbridge in 1322, when the unfortunate owner was speared in the anus and killed. Now, the weapon is going to be auctioned by Christie’s auction house in London. Is this England’s unluckiest sword? 

Jeeze, I don’t need to part with ‘£120.000 – $205.000′ to bring forth bad luck, I can make my own for free… 😉 Aye.

Hot lead to cool graphite

From George V’s Coronation to horrors of WWI: Drawings of major British historical events from first illustrated newspaper go on sale. Remarkable drawings, recorded in The Illustrated London News, showed pivotal events to hundreds of thousands of readers in elegant and intricate style.They vary from the state pomp seen at events such as coronations and Royal Weddings to the unvarnished horror of trench warfare.article-2685771-1F80328C00000578-327_964x629The collection of front page images from The Illustrated London News, including this drawing depicting British officers relaxing in the Ypres Salient drawn by Italian artist Fortunino Matania                          Click all to enlarge.article-2685771-1F802FAA00000578-22_964x624Intricate image shows hundreds of women working in a munitions factory circa 1915, which was part of a step-change in the nation’s attitude towards working women.article-2685771-1F8043A300000578-494_964x635Soldiers tending to the wounded on the Western Front in 1915, with barbed wire and No-Man’s Land visible in the distance. Drawings of major British historical events from first illustrated newspaper go on sale

Amazing drawings that capture the moment perfectly.            Yours Aye.

The pungent aroma of Viking…

The great smell of ‘Brute': York tourist board creates Viking ‘fragrance’ for men who want to stink like a ninth century Norse warrior!Visit YorkIn this modern image-conscious world, when we all want to portray ourselves in the best possible light, a man might want to smell of many things. He certainly wants to smell of diligently washed skin and newly cleaned clothes. He probably wants to smell of expensive hair products. He might even want to smell of whatever fragrance David Beckham is flogging this week, or some other fine aftershave.Visit York

But one thing he probably doesn’t want to smell like is a stinking bearded warrior from 13 centuries ago. A stinking bearded warrior, who, to be precise, has a penchant for smashing up villages, wearing blood-stained battle gear and sporting awful helmet hair. Nonetheless, this hasn’t stopped tourist officials in York from launching ‘Norse Power’, a – shall we say – niche-appeal perfume which will help a man to reek like a Viking.

‘Visit York’ has created this bottled attack on our nostrils in tribute to the city’s Norse past. It has been concocted using assorted pungent ingredients: deep-soaked sweat (worked up during a raid on a British settlement); seawater (from a long voyage across the North Sea from the Viking heartland of Norway); mud and damp (from travels on foot over sodden terrain); dried blood (not necessarily model’s own – from a day’s fighting and pillaging).Visit York

The eye-watering package is completed by the ‘aromas’ of cooked meat from Viking feasts, hard liquor (Vikings had a noted appetite for mead) and – as a token pleasant inclusion – notes of fresh pine from all those lengthy hikes though deep-rooted forests. ‘With Norse Power, we wanted to try and capture the sort of smells that would have been part of the lives of Viking warriors around the time that York was the Norse capital of England,’ says Michelle Brown, the marketing manager at Visit York ‘But more than that, with all the bath products, deodorants, perfumes and aftershaves available today, we wanted to give male visitors to York the chance to cast aside their allegiance to modern aromas and instead embrace the smells from an era of warriors.’ The launch of Norse Power is, of course, just a bit of fun – although those who really want to smell like the inside of an animal-skin cloak can try the fragrance this weekend. Visit YorkYork was effectively the heart of Viking culture in Britain after it was attacked and quelled by Viking invaders in 866AD. The Viking era ran roughly between the end of the eighth century and the middle of the 11th. In Britain, it came to a bloody conclusion in 1066, when an invading force from Norway was defeated at the Battle of Stamford Bridge (in modern Yorkshire) – just days before the Battle of Hastings saw William the Conqueror and his cohorts complete the Norman Conquest. Notorious for their ferocity, Vikings hailed from the Scandinavian landmass (especially Norway, Denmark and Sweden), although they also settled in Greenland. tinerant and aggressive, their attacks on Europe made them the scourge of the continent for almost 300 years – and even took them as far south as Spain and Portugal. However, for all their reputation as vicious killers, Vikings were also great sailors and explorers – and there is a good deal of evidence to suggest that they crossed the Atlantic and ‘discovered’ the Americas (not least Newfoundland) long before Christopher Columbus.          Kinda cute in a Viking sort of way?bearded_lady_clare-680x1022I’m popping into York this weekend, though I will give the opportunity of ‘Norse Power’ a wide birth. Having seen those viking women close up I figure its best not to encourage them in any way. Even after a gallon of ale and a large brace of rum, its still not a pretty sight…      Yours Aye.