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I have had a few "False Starts"....  The old blog Anything at Anytime - cant get in so....
bringing a New Fresher Version for all to see.  If you compare the New to the Old -- Very similar but different.  What will the future bring... who knows.... but I have found that is where the adventures begin.

Join me and Maybe we can find a Dragon or two (or three, or......)

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Sunday, July 19, 2015

A Last Grand Adventure of Youth

If The Perfect Cup of Coffee! is my "Top Dog", This is the "Icing on the Cake"
This Actually happened in 1988 just before I was to go to Navy Basic Training in Orlando Fl.
You Can't Make this up

Enjoy, Hopefully as Much as I Enjoyed and Remember the Trip with Fond memories of my Youth
(All Pictures were added today)

Writ by me today

Welsh Flag that Flies over Castle mentioned in story

Actual Castle viewed from a little down the coast

Written on Old site
May 28th 2010
This is going to be a bit different so I need to set a few things straight before getting into the story.

1.  I Love Dragons - have since my early teens and I have a bunch of them around my part of the house (roughly a 2'X2'X8" shelf/cabinet) (what do you expect the guy always gets the smallest section when in a house full of "Girls"!!!!!)

2.  When I was younger I drank like a fishy sailor (what am I talking about I was a sailor a few months after this happened)
3.  I Love Castles - the old European fortress Kind - of course the ones you always associate with -- you guessed it --- DRAGONS

4.  This all happened 22 years ago come this Sept. so I may not get everything right and all people can have complete denial rights.  There will only be One other name mentioned in here and He will Have complete denial rights with his folks if they read this. 

5.  And if you haven't figured it out yet this little bit is about A Dragon, A Castle and Drinking.

6.  This was inspired by a gentleman in wales that I spoke with yesterday and brought back memories.  Tip a Pint of Welsh Bitters back for me tonight please.


     It started out in a place called Hessich Olendorf Germany (spelling may be off on the town name) back in 88 (yes for you younger ones that is 1988).  I had just spent the summer with my folks in Germany and was in that no mans land we find ourselves in sometimes in our late teens.  Just Bombed at College and not knowing or having a clue as to what or how I was going to do anything. 

One day out of the blue I got a burr under my saddle and do not remember exactly what triggered it but I went down to the main US base there in Frankfurt and decided to Enlist and of all things in the Navy.  Up to that time in my life I had lived around Army and Air Force and had no clue about the Navy. 

Anyway, when I got back to my folks place up north, I let them know I had enlisted.  Really, still to this day not sure what the reaction was.  Sort of a mix of WTF and Congrats.  During the discussion we had I decided to take the money I had saved and take a vacation (holiday - for my European friends) and visit family friends that are actually family (you know those friends that are not family but once you become true friends they become family). 

Well, I called and set it all up with them, went and got my Euro Pass for the Rails and Commenced my journey. 

Chris Dugdale (who was the oldest in the friend family) met me in London and we had a couple of interesting days in London and I actually stayed in my first Hostel and no it was nothing like those freak movies. 

After a couple of days we boarded the rails and headed for Cricceth in Gwyenned (sp?) Wales.  On the way we stopped at a Family Friend of theirs near Worcester (I think), and had one of the most Fantastic meals, Man this lady could cook and the meat just melted in your mouth.  Then they took us to their local pub so they could "Show off" the American.  No money out of my pocket that night, boy was I toast!!!!

The next day we get on the rails again and go and get several beers, larger, suds whatever you want to call it.  Oh and when I say several I mean Several.  You know those little tables between the seats on trains, can to can to can covering the entire length and width of the table it was nothing but cans.  By the time we got to Cricceth we were goners.

This is where it happens, in Cricceth. 

Cricceth is a quaint little village on the coast of England and has some of the most beautiful scenery around that I can recall.  Not to mention that out on the Point is an OLD CASTLE flying the Welsh flag (white over green with a RED DRAGON overlaying the field).
Ha, you were wondering where the Dragon and Castle were coming in, now how do I work them in? You'll see.

The next day we wander about the village stopping and meeting and being introduced to everyone.  Had a Good day and soon to find out a better and worse night.
Chris and I ran into friends of his and they invited us to join them at one of the local pubs and we had a repeat of the previous night..... again No money out of my Pocket.  While playing billiards (pool for us Americans not educated in the game) and putting down a few pints of bitters, the subject came up that I liked Castles and Dragons.  Well, the discussion got pretty lively about the old tales that the Dragon still lived in that Ole Castle on the point.  An he only came out wot to bugger yanks like me!!!  We all had some good laughs at that and a few more pints and of course a few MORE pints.  By this time I was ready to go show that Ole Dragon what us Yanks was all about.  The bravery of Drink (smirking and remembering). 

Well, it was getting about closing time for the pub and we all went up and bought a couple extras, they all knew him and he was kind to the Yank and let us take them out with us on the honor of not driving.  We did not drive.  But we Ran like hell to the Gates of the Castle!!!!
Actual Castle as viewed from just a bit higher
than where what happens below
 You can figure where the conversation was with us at the gate of the Castle.  I am pretty sure at that time that we all KNEW there was no DRAGON but then again We were all Certain the Dragon was there. 
We got one guy up and over the fence, and then another and then another until I was the only one left on the other side.  Here was my dilemma, I am an American in England about to "Invade a British Castle" to find a Dragon,  what kind of punishment would I face if caught???????
In my state of Drunken Bravery I said to hell with it the Yanks is a coming and was up on top of that fence before you could blink.  The getting down was the problem...... it was a crazy drunken state of 20ft (in reality all of maybe 8ft) but drunk and up there man it was HIGH.  I jumped and about halfway down I knew I was in trouble....  my balance shifted and I landed funny and to catch myself when my feet hit I pushed and boy did I push.  Like a defensive lineman in American football or those guys in a proper Scrum in rugby I Launched myself........ straight into a ROCK WALL.  The Rock Wall WON hands down.

Talk about sobering up a crowd.  In an instant we all knew the Hunt was over, I had a gash in the top of my head and it was bleeding profusely.  We finally got me over the wall and back to Chris' mom and dad's house.  She was up!  Saw the bleeding and was all over us like you know what.  We had it figured out I jumped out of the way of a car because I forgot that the English drive on the other side of the road and I fell and hit my head on a Rock Wall.  See almost all Truth.  Just fudged where and why about the jump.  She patched me up and to this day I still have that scar. 

And even though I never got to see my Dragon that will always be a fond memory of A Last Grand Adventure of Youth.

Maybe, just maybe someday I will be able to take my wife and daughters to the place I hunted Dragons and had a Blast.

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