It may have been a while since we last caught up with Paddy and Plunkett, but that doesn’t mean that they haven’t been up to their usual tricks! Last month they set off to the south east of England, hoping to escape the decidedly un-spring-like weather we were enduring here in Ireland at the time. Luckily for them, they were greeted by sunny days, and lots of fun things to do!
Plunkett got to choose the first port of call – Fishbourne Roman Palace – but as you can see above, Paddy insisted they get into character first! Plunkett soon retook the lead though… here he is admiring the famous “Cupid and Dolphin” mosaic inside the palace.
Fishbourne Palace is considered the largest Roman villa discovered in the UK to date, and some of the decorated mosaic floors are in perfect condition. Plunkett asked a passing human to take a picture of this one for him as a souvenir – look at the detail!
But not all of the villa is in this pristine state. Other past inhabitants of this area have left their mark on Fishbourne too – look what the boys found here!
According to our trusty friend Wikipedia, Fishbourne burnt down in around 270AD, and was subsequently abandoned. Apparently they were doing extensive renovations at the time, so perhaps the builders decided to focus their energies on building a new villa, instead of fixing up an old one. Paddy is reasonably sure that this could have been the first recorded instance of an insurance scam, but Plunkett, as usual, needs more convincing. Anyway, many years later, the site was used as a Saxon burial ground – some of the graves cut right down through the mosaic floors! A few of them, like the one above, have been left in situ… But some of the Saxon remains have been exhumed for closer inspection by curious visiting Beasties.
Once the lads had seen everything inside the villa, they headed outside to have a look around the grounds. The gardens have been restored and filled with the kind of plants the Romans would have had here back in the palace’s heyday, and also included a “Triclinium”, or outdoor feasting area.
This would have been covered in sumptuous fabrics, allowing the family to sprawl around in the sunshine and enjoy tasty treats. Here’s Paddy demonstrating how to get the best out of your Triclinium.
“I think I could get used to this, Plunkett! Pass the stuffed dormouse!”
After they’d enjoyed picnic-ing like Romans, Paddy got to choose the afternoon’s entertainment. He decided on a trip on the Chichester Ship Canal… the passenger boats are captained by volunteers, so all the proceeds from the hour-and-a-quarter-long cruise go towards the upkeep and restoration of the canal. There was plenty to see along the way…
…Or was there?
Uh-oh! We all know what happens when Paddy takes the wheel… I wonder where they’ll end up next?
Be sure to join us on Tuesday for more monster antics! And in the meantime, have a super weekend!