July 31, 2001
I have been hearing from a number of people about the daily missives. Cal has been writing them and they are available on the web site at www.ukminingventures.com. But I thought I would send out a message every couple of days. As Cal says 'for as different perspective'. Things are pretty normal for me. I am running to Kendal and to the quarry quite a bit. Right now is the prime vacation weeks in the UK. So lots of drivers that are poking along at 30mph. Its driving everyone nuts. We had to be in Durham yesterday for a concert and it took us wayyyyy longer than usual to get there. Road construction, farm machinery and tourists. We all went to see the Cologne String Ensemble play in the Durham Cathedral. It was truly awesome. The acoustics in the Cathedral are wonderful. The Ensemble is world class, and for a while everyone of us was transported to that place that only music can get you. It was a wonderful way to end the day. Ayla is getting a crash course in rock cleaning and trimming. She is doing quite well. I have spoiled her for strawberries permanently. I took her to the berry fields by Durham. We needed something for people to snack on at the barbecue on Sunday. So bought a ton of berries and had at it. Byron, Ayla and I had three days of strawberries and raspberries. There is only one way to eat berries, and that is fresh off the vine.
Byron is chugging along in the mine. Right now he has four areas going. Dave and Lofty are learning to collect minerals. Cal and Richard are up at the mine daily helping with the collecting process. I may have to be up there as well, but that will have to wait until after Veronica is here and settled. She is arriving on Saturday. Between Ayla, Veronica and myself we should be able to keep up. The Birthday Pocket is still continuing to give us really fine specimens. The Solstice Pocket is waiting. The Black Sheep is going along and the West Cross Cut is giving us weird things that look good, but jury is still out there. Byron says the West Cross Cut has got really gemmy things coming out. So it looks like we have another area going. the West Face was shot yesterday, and Byron is itching to get a look at it today. Almost too much material, but I'm not complaining. Right now we are hunting down a short drill and track.
On a light note, Wallace the lamb/sheep is back in my field. He is still a runt, but beginning to fit in with the rest of the sheep. Oh Well they all have to grow up.
Cheers, Byron, Ayla and Jonina
Greetings from the Pennines,
Today started out cloudy and cool but just kept getting better and we drove home tonight from the village of Romalkirk with just the 3/4 moon hanging in the sky.
We had a real crew up at Little Allercleugh this morning cleaning minerals, three people doing watergunning, one packing and myself sawing though the saw pulley slipped, then the motor moved in its mounting then we had a bit of a power problem, then an overheating problem but ultimately all worked out well. About 10:30 Kerith drove back to Burnbrae to meet Mel Hindin and Roy Foerster and bring them up and show the two of them around the house and shed. About 12:30 we drove (five of us) to the Cross Keys in Eastgate for lunch and afterwards Kerith and Mel and Roy drove to the Rogerley mine while Richard and I waited at the Durham Dales Center to meet Trevor and Shelagh Bridges. We arrived just minutes after Kerith and Mel and Roy made it to the parking area and all of us walked to the mine about 2:00 pm and spent the next 2 1/2 hours digging in the Black Sheep Pocket after yesterday's blast and looking at the newly exposed and now mostly dug pocket in the West Crosscut which has a couple of very fine gemmy plates exposed. The blast at the end of the old adit produces some good color but until the area is mucked and timber supports put in it is too dangerous to spend much time checking it out. A good time was had by all and we all got filthy dirty. According to Kerith, I was as dirty as she has ever seen me - not that bad actually, I know I've been worse.
We got back to Burnbrae to shower and do a quick turn-around to meet Mel and Roy at the Rose and Crown for dinner in Romalkirk. Spent a very enjoyable evening. The sort of three hour dining experience that sort of wizzes by. Roy had self-collected a couple of specimens and Mel and he both thanked us far to much for the experience, it was mutually enjoyable on both sides.
That is about all there is from this place way north of Lake Woebegone.