July 19, 2001

Greetings from the cold and windy Northern Pennines:

Today was Kerith's birthday so we lazed around in bed till about 7:00a.m. and did chores around the house till 9:00a.m. Dave and Liz Hacker were due to meet us at the Durham Dales Center at 10:30a.m. for a quick tour of the Rogerley. Dave and Liz collect North of England minerals and are operating the St. Peter's mine near Allenheads for specimens.

We got dressed and up into the mine by 11:00a.m. and found Byron at the face of the eastern tunnel working a thick seam of mud and totally surrounded by specimens. Everything here is a better color than I have seen anywhere, the twins are up to over 1" and are glassy and gem and some specimens are nearly all twins, a number of specimens out today that are to everyone's taste in quality. In some cases, the smaller cubes have gem glassy corners but the opaque center but in many ways this only adds to the beauty of the large lustrous gem twins. Some of the individual twins that are thumbnails and toenails and small miniatures are wonderful, the material is very much like the famed Height's mine material.

After filling five tubs with wrapped specimens we headed back to the Durham Dales Center for a much need hot lunch - the temperatures here today are about 50 degrees and the wind is blowing at around 30mph and the rain makes you cold quickly.

This evening we are meeting with our friends John and Marie Land for Kerith's birthday dinner at the Old Hall in Stanhope the Bishop of Durham's 12th century hunting lodge which has been refurbished with rooms to let and a good food - so we've heard. John and Marie have two gift shops and sell a number of our specimens from their stores in Durham and at the Durham Dales Center in Stanhope so will come up to Little Allercleugh this evening before dinner and take a look at the day's efforts.

Thats all from this place north of Lake Woebegone. Cal

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