Our Eleventh Day
We commenced the day with diary writing but by 10.00am we were on our way to Osborne House in a motorcoach. On our way we stopped at Whippingham Church where we saw a most beautiful reredo (a screen or decoration behind the altar in a church, usually depicting religious iconography or images), Queen Victoria’s blue chair and the window with a figure of Elizabeth.
At Osborne House, a guide showed us round the wonderful Durbar Room which was prepared in Indian style for Queen Victoria’s Jubilee when she received Indian Potentates in Great State. We saw their addresses of loyalty decorated with many precious stones from Eastern lands. We saw the splendid furniture, sculptures, pictures, glass and china used by Queen Victoria and her family. We noticed the still darkened room where Queen Victoria died. We walked along the pathway to Swiss Cottage, Albert Barracks and the tool shed. We saw many toys which gave us pictures of the Royal Family at play.
We then started for Carisbrooke, eating our sandwiches on the way, and arrived there at 3.00pm. We walked around the ramparts, peeping through the spy-holes and imagining the archers of Norman days keeping off the enemy.
The Keep was visited and also the ruins of that part of the castle where Charles I was imprisoned. The Chapel of St Nicholas in Castro drew our attention as it is very beautiful and serves the two-fold purpose – in memory of Charles I and the men who fell in the Great War. Ned the donkey next drew our attention as he was just “off-duty” from the well house. Jack the older donkey turned the big wooden wheel to draw up water from the well that was sunk 800 years ago and cut through 160 feet of chalk to the clay below.
Before returning we visited the Church of St Mary The Virgin at Carisbrooke where we saw “hatchments” of Queen Elizabeth, Queen Anne and Queen Victoria and the Royal pew in front of the altar.
Our driver took us home by a longer and more picturesque way across Arreton, Merstone, Ashey and Brading Downs and along the front at Sandown and Shanklin.
Our Twelfth Day
We took advantage of the anticyclone to get in paddling and a motor boat trip. We left our diaries until the evening and sallied forth at 9.45. We walked along the front until evening toward Lake and spent a jolly morning paddling, building sandcastles and a perky little dog joined in our fun.
The afternoon was perfect for our motor boat trip, and we got a splendid view of the coastal-line. We went in two parties, one in the “Mascot” and the other in the “May Queen”. From the water we were able to see the great cliffs standing up boldly and we were able to distinguish easily the different rocks of which they consist. We saw clefts in the greensand cliffs known as the Shanklin and Luccombe Chines.
We went as far as Ventnor Pier and circled back to Shanklin.
We noticed the difference between the green Undercliff and the bare, steep cliffs.
St Boniface towered up behind Bonchurch and Ventnor and recalled our climb. We obtained a snapshot of the “Lorna Doone” as it steamed on to the Needles and a yacht made a very beautiful picture as it glided gracefully by. We also saw cormorants and gulls as we passed.
The short evening was spent in diary writing and writing postcards home.