We've arrived back in time, to 1593, when Queen Elizabeth I ruled England.
God save the Queen!
Our first stop was at the Globe theatre, where we watched a bit of a new play called "The Taming of the Shrew."
Then we headed for the banks of the river Thames, to watch the mudbeggars.
Mudbeggars are beggars who collect a crowd (and hopefully some coins) by performing amusing stunts in the mud.
And it was real mud!
None of us wanted to have this job!
After watching the mudbeggars, we went to the tournament field, to watch some knights demonstrate their military prowess.
Our section of the audience was told to cheer for this knight. Appropriately, he was dressed in black and gold!
Here he is practicing with his lance and hitting the quintain.
We all watched intently.
Another task was to throw the javelin and try to hit the bulls-eye painted on the bale of straw.
At last! What we were waiting for: the jousting!
Here's our knight....
And he scored a direct hit on his opponent!
Go Black and Gold!
There were four knights, so we watched several pairings as they jousted.
After the jousting, the knights came up to the fence and we could ask questions...
And pat the horses.
This knight said he and his horse had been doing this for 10 years.
After the joust, we found seats at the Human Chessboard.
The match was held in honor of Queen Elizabeth. The strategists were both men who wanted to impress the queen.
One was Sir Robert Dudley, pictured here.
He directed his pieces (people) to various spots on the chessboard, and his opponent did the same.
When one piece challenged another, everyone cleared the board and the two chess pieces fought a duel to determine who would win that spot.
Some of the fights were pretty spectacular.
We were all sad when our black and gold knight was defeated in his match.
But there were plenty of other bouts to watch!
After the chess match, we walked through the town. We were able to speak with a pirate...
and even the queen!
We also saw a stiltwalker!
It was a great trip!
And there was one more bit of excitement when one of the vans got stuck in the mud and needed to be pulled out before we could leave.