Alma Mater - UEA and Norwich - Day Four & Five

These two days were spent mooching around the city. Day five included a change of accommodation as our son & daughter-in-law were joining us for a few days. The on-suite room, that had served us well for the first 4 days, was superseded by a large apartment in the city centre. Photo 1 shows the lounge/dining room. The record player in the far corner came with a supply of LPs from the 1960s/1970s (Beatles, Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Van Morrison, Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin, etc); many of which I also listen to at home!!

Photo 1: Lounge Dining Room of our Norwich City Centre Apartment

Day four was spent wandering the streets of Norwich, popping into churches including St Julian's, art exhibitions and the occasional 1970's student haunt such as Head in the Clouds ...

Photo 2: Mary outside Head in the Clouds (May 2024)

... where she went for the full student re-enactment by buying a top. Head in the Clouds opened in 1971, a few months before we both started our university careers. I used to buy my loon pants from here (aka loons, bell bottoms, flares). The clothes were cheap, imported (from India/Asia?) and colourful - and you never washed them with other items as they were not dye-fast.

Photo 3: Mary deciding which top to buy (May 2024)

A trip to Norwich has to include a visit to Norwich Market and its 190 or so colourful market stalls (Photo 4). The market in Norwich was mentioned in the Domesday Book and is still going strong. At the beginning of the 1970s, when we used the market, at least one-third of the stalls sold fruit and vegetables; these have largely disappeared due to competition from the supermarkets.

Photo 4: Norwich Market (May 2024)

Street food and specialist food emporiums are now the main type of stall. We did enjoy some very tasty vegetarian fish (battered halloumi) and chips at Lucy's Fish & Chips.

Photo 5: Mary at Norwich Market (May 2024)

Norwich has a modern library, The Forum, which opened in 2001 after its previous incarnation burnt down in 1994 (see here, here, and here for more details). In addition to housing the library, the office/studios of BBC East and a couple of restaurants, the large atrium hosts exhibitions and events. During our visit, the Nara to Norwich Exhibition was on display in the atrium organised by the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures.

Photo 6: Nara to Norwich Exhibition, The Forum, Norwich (May 2024)

We were fortunate that during our visit to The Forum, we witnessed a performance by the Karyōbinga Shōmyō Kenkyūkai ensemble (Videos 1 & 2).

Video 1: Buddhist Sutra Chanting, The Forum, Norwich (May 2024)

Video 2: Buddhist Sutra Chanting, The Forum, Norwich (May 2024)

There was time for coffee/tea and cake at Biddy's Tea Room (delicious, great service, busy) ...

... before heading back to our digs for the evening after a brief diversion to check out the location of our next accommodation.

Day five was largely taken up meeting a couple of friends from our University days who still live in Norwich and with whom we have kept in touch with by exchanging Christmas cards. Betwixt these two visits we managed to dump our bags at the new digs (Photo 1). Dinner was a Thai takeaway (👍) with our son & daughter-in-law.


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