Monday, August 9, 2010

Tales of Yorkshire: Lyke Wake Walk ~ Part 1

I know I told you the first tale would be of Sutton Bank, but hubby (TP) decided he would like to hold off on that one, and what he says goes; therefore, today's tale will be of his 19 hour childhood trek across the North Yorkshire moors.  If you are familiar with Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights, this is the same desolate area where Heathcliff and Cathy fell in love.


This year Jemima Puddleduck and Billy Bacus selected the Lyke Wake Walk for their walking club's longest trek. They knew it would be a challenge for the kids since it stretched the full width of the North Yorkshire moors, which at times could be quite treacherous, but they had all been schooled in reading maps and using compasses so they felt this hike would be a good test of their newly acquired skills.

Excitement built in the classroom that Friday as the chatter between the school kids mounted.  Math and science were not on their minds, it was the walk that would take them through the night and into the next day that stirred imaginations that day.  Great stories had been circulating of the wild creatures that lurked on the moors at night, so TP prepared for the worst by arming himself with a 10 inch bowie knife that he tucked in his pants that morning and kept a secret.  At 13 years of age, back in the good old days, it was easy to purchase weapons of this nature and bring them to school with no concern of being handcuffed and thrown in jail.

Jemima Puddleduck, as she was called due to an incident that occurred during the upcoming hike, was the secondary school geography teacher.  A very likeable teacher she was, with her large oval spectacles that covered much of her face.

Billy Bacus, the art teacher, was also one of the cool teachers in the secondary school, unlike the math teacher, Percy Gibbs.  Thank goodness Mr. Gibbs had no interest in hiking. There was no messing around in his math class, and he made sure there never would be.  As Mr. Gibbs stood in front of  his class on the first day of school, in his grasp was a piece of flexible rubber approximately 2 feet in length, 2 inches wide, and about 1/2 inch thick with ridges on one side. "There will be no talking, no cheating, no day dreaming", he claimed , then - WHACK - at the speed of light he brought down that piece of rubber upon one of the wooden desks.  Pencils bounced and spines became straight and rigid "OR ELSE I'LL BRING OUT PERCY".  That was the last time Percy's wrath was ever demonstrated in math class that year.

TP was keeping a close eye on the time of day.  Finally, quarter til four ticked around.  Alright then! Time to gather for the big walk!  About 25 school kids lined up at the Doddy's bus, a luxury bus line, to take them to the moors.  They needed to arrive at their destination before it was too late in the day, so there was much shuffling and orderly confusion as the teachers were trying to get the children onto the bus.  The trip took about two and a half hours to reach the small village of Osmotherley on the western end of the great walk they were all about to conquer, or so they thought....

                             courtesy of Google Images