Now you can listen to and read along, with Simon's "Time Adventure" Part Two!
(When you see C: that is Chloe the computer speaking)
This feels a little bit different to last time.
For starters, it's almost completely dark in here.
Can you feel how cool the air is against your face?
It also smells a tiny bit damp.
I bet you can hear that my voice is bouncing off the walls a little bit, but not as much as our first visit.
That means, wherever we are, it's not as big as the warehouse.
I reckon Chloe has already pressed the go button on the virtual reality this time.
If I didn't know any better, I'd say we were in a cave.
Well done Simon, your deduction skills are extremely good.
You are correct on both counts.
Yes, the temporal, virtual reality, holographic algorithm is already running, and yes,
you are both standing in a cave.
Oh G'day Chloe.
I'm glad you're here, I've got no idea where the light switch is in here.
Simon, you are in a cave there is no light switch.
I can however raise the level of the ambient lighting for you.
Holey Moley, ooh la la and Cie la vie!
Now I know exactly where we are.
Chloe, have we just stepped into the past, like 17,000 years into the past?
Are we in France?
Are we in the Lascaux caves?
I knew it!
Can you see in your imagination that we're standing in an absolutely ginormous cave.
You could actually fit 4 of those double decker London buses in here.
Yeah, four of them, inside a cave.
Just put 2 beside each other, then another two like that, in front of them.
I don't know how you'd get them in or out, but they'd fit alright.
There's a couple of puddles of water on the ground but they're tiny and the water would have probably run in from the entrance.
That's because the soil around the outside of this cave has a layer of clay, and that makes it quite waterproof.
Like I said to Chloe a second ago, this is the Lascaux Cave, in France and it is mega famous.
The reason it's so famous is staring you right in the face.
The walls and most of the ceiling, are covered with amazing artwork.
When I say covered, I mean covered.
It doesn't matter which bit of the walls you look at, there'll be a painting on them.
It's a good job their mum didn't tell them off for drawing on the walls.
Just check out the gigantic drawings straight ahead of us.
This part of the cave is called the "Hall Of Bulls", so no prizes for guessing that those are drawings of 4 unbelievably massive, black bulls.
One of them is more than 5 metres long.
Good luck fitting that on your bedroom wall at home!
So far, that's the biggest cave art animal in the world and there's plenty of caves with drawings in them.
The only continent that doesn't have caves like this is Antarctica.
Let's walk over and get a closer look at these walls.
You might have to think about avoiding the bones that are scattered around on the floor.
Oh don't worry, they're not bones from the people who drew these pictures.
Those are reindeer bones, yep I said reindeer.
They were one of the main things on the dinner menu in this part of town, so those bones are what's left of a prehistoric artists snack.
Sort of their version of KFC or pizza.
Maybe not pizza, bread won't be invented for another 9000 years!
What do you call a fake pizza?
A pepper-phony pizza!
I always order my pizza cut into 6 pieces instead of 8.
I could never eat 8 pieces!
When I called up to order it I said will my pizza be long?
They said no it'll be round!
Then I said, “Do you do takeaways?”
They said “Yes”, so I said OK, “what’s 972 minus 345?”
I don't think they like it when I call!
Oh jackpot, get a load of all the art materials on the floor next to the wall.
Someone must have been in here quite recently doing a bit of painting.
They're not the sort of art things you'd have in your class at school though.
You won't find a single paintbrush here, there's only little mats or pads made out of moss, or hair for dabbing paint on with.
There's a couple of hollow bones lying there too.
If you don't think it's gross, you can think about picking one up to have a closer look.
I'll pick up the other one too, because I want to have a good old sticky beak inside it.
I thought so, can you see that the inside of it is all black?
That's because they use it like a straw to blow paint onto the walls.
You could say these guys invented the spray can.
Yep, it's the old fashioned way to do graffiti!
There's no crayons here either, but what they did have was that little pile of black and red rocks near your feet.
Let's think about picking up one of those each.
You grab a red one and I'll get a black one, and we can have a go, on a blank bit of wall.
If we can find a blank bit that is!
Sometimes they'd use these like a big chunky crayon, so maybe think about trying to draw a circle or a square.
Oh man, you have to press really hard to even make a mark.
Lots of these outlines were made just by scraping away the top layer of rock so that a different colour would show through.
When they wanted to use paint, somebody had to crush these rocks up, really finely, and mix them with water and clay.
I'd be no good at that job, my little frog arms would get too tired!
Now I just want to go home and get my coloured pencils out.
Do you know which coloured pencil is the sharpest?
The red one of course, it can draw blood!
Where do vampires go to buy their art supplies?
Why don't vampires like mosquitoes?
Too much competition!
Sorry about that, I don't know how I got onto vampires, there aren't even any bats in here.
Eh Chloe, can you tell me where the drawing of the famous Chinese horse is?
Of course Simon.
If you turn to your right, and walk into the slightly smaller corridor, you will find it on the right hand wall.
Roger that, and Merci Mademoiselle.
Come on, there is something extra special about the art in this cave and it's not just how groovy the pictures are to look at.
Nearly there, and there it is!
Can you see, in your mind, that in the middle of loads of other pictures, there's a drawing of a brown horse?
The really special thing about that horse is the curved line underneath it, made up of 29 dots.
Scientists have worked out that it's a calendar of the moon's phases in the sky.
We're looking at one of the first times ever, that people started to measure time.
But not just measure it, they wrote it down, on this wall.
That's not the only calendar in here either.
All the different animals on these walls, are like having a calendar on your wall at home, and every month would have a different animal on it, depending on what time of year they would show up in this part of France.
I had a job in a factory that made calendars once, but I didn't last long.
I knew from the start my days were numbered!
They said they fired me because I took too many days off!
I hope you don't mind a bit of a walk because I want to take you up to the entrance of this cave.
We have to go back past the paintings of the big bulls then keep going up the slope.
We definitely don't have time to look at all of the drawings in here because there's nearly 2,000 of them.
The bulls are the biggest, but the horses are the mostest, they really loved drawing horses!
There's also cows and cats, a bear and a rhinoceros.
I'll tell you what they didn't do, selfies!
Out of the 2 thousand drawings on these walls there's only one of a human, and it's just a little stick figure.
Oh wow, I almost forgot to show you.
There's a picture of a bull on the left hand wall beside us, and can you see those seven black dots just above its shoulder?
That is just like the pattern of the Pleiades star cluster in the night sky.
Scientists are finding more and more drawings in here that they reckon could be different constellations.
How crazy is that.
Reading and writing haven't been invented yet, but they were already having a go at making a star map.
Oh Chloe, just before we head up to the cave entrance, could you show us how bright it actually was in here when they were doing the wall paintings?
Of course Simon.
I will start by reducing the current level of illumination to zero.
This will allow your eyes to re-calibrate to complete darkness.
After a few seconds I will introduce the more accurate flaming torches and small, animal fat powered lamps, the artists had access to.
Darkness in 3, 2 and 1.
When you say zero Chloe, you mean sub-zero!
I can't even see my little frog hand in front of my little froggy face.
Raising level of torches and lamps in 3, 2 and 1.
Sounds good Chloe, how much longer till we reach their working level?
Working level has now been reached.
Oh man, how good was their eyesight?
I reckon the light in my fridge is brighter than this!
Can you see in your imagination that there are some flaming torches on the walls and a few small oil lamps scattered on the ground.
And because the light is constantly flickering, it makes the pictures come alive, as if they're moving, excellent.
Archaeologists say they probably used this big part of the cave for some sort of ceremonies, because they didn't live in here.
They would have lived in one of the other caves on the side of this hill.
So you could say this one is just for painting and prehistoric parties.
How cool would it have been to hear them all playing drums or chanting in here, totally groovy!
Righto, now where were we.
Oh yeah, we're walking up the slope to check out the entrance.
Oh look, there's actually a little bit of sunlight coming in from up there.
It doesn't reach down to the main part of the cave, but it's enough to see where we're going on this slippery slope.
Okey Dokey, we're almost there, just a few more steps, and…. we made it.
Holy heat ray batman, how bright is that sun!
Welcome to the Summer Solstice in the Dordogne (Dor-Doyne) Valley.
The summer solstice is the day of the year, with the most hours of sunlight, so usually the middle of June here in France.
Scientists reckon that the way the sunlight comes in the entrance at this time of year, might be one of the reasons they picked this cave.
Plus it's high up on the side of this hill so they can keep an eye on the valley below for any intruders from a different tribe or the migrating animals.
Speaking of animals, have a look down in the valley, about 500 metres away on the other side of the river.
That is a small herd of reindeer, and Holy Snuffelupagus, there's even a couple of woolly mammoths.
They look like 2 elephants wearing long shaggy coats, and their tusks are ginormous.
You better have a good look though, this is one of the last times anyone will ever see those mammoths.
The world is slowly warming up, and it'll be too hot for them soon.
People tell me I have the memory of a Woolly mammoth.
It's just like an elephants, but a little fuzzy!
How would you calm down an angry mammoth?
Give it a trunk-qualiser!
Mammoths aren't the only animals that don't live France anymore.
If you were one of the humans who did those cave paintings, you'd see lions and leopards and wolves, oh my!
What I can tell you, is exactly what kind of animal is going to be standing right where we are, 17,000 years from now.
It will be a little white terrier dog, and his name is Robot.
Between now and then, this cave entrance is going to be sealed off and hidden by a rock slide for thousands and thousands of years, but in 1940, that little terrier will be out for a walk with his owners, and he's going to dig his way into this cave.
And that's how the world finds out about this crazy collection of prehistoric paintings.
That was really good news for all the people who got to come and see it, but it was bad news for the pictures on the walls.
Only 20 years after it was discovered, they had to close the cave to the public.
I can tell you why in two words.
Mould and fungus, yep, mould and fungus.
For those 20 years, about 1000 people walked through the cave every day.
All the moisture from their breath and bacteria from their shoes, started the mould and fungus growing on the walls, and that started to damage the artwork.
Weird huh, you can damage things just by looking at them.
You can't even visit this cave today, because they're still trying to get rid of the mould, but you can do something even more amazing.
Can you see that flat piece of ground at the bottom of this hill?
There might be reindeer and mammoths walking on it now, but in 17,000 years the French government is going to take 50,000 photos inside this cave, then use them as a guide to build an exact copy of the cave and all of its paintings, down there on that flat bit of land.
I'd love to have a copy of this cave back in my own rainforest, but they do cost 88 million dollars to build, so maybe not!
Hang on a minute, that was the 2nd clue on our tickets
Yep, Clue number 2.
You will visit an ancient art gallery, the only one on the planet that was discovered by a Robot.
It was talking about the dog named Robot who found this unbelievable prehistoric art gallery.
But check out our tickets.
Now that we worked it out, that clue has disappeared and another one is slowly taking its place.
Chloe, does that mean there's more for us to see in this adventure?
Yes Simon, there is more to see.
Please stand as still as possible to minimize the possibility of dizziness or disorientation as the scene transitions.
Engaging the second phase of the temporal, virtual reality, holographic algorithm in 3, 2 and 1.
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