Aug
2014

Editing posts

I understand the difficulty of being an editor. Lately I have been busy editing posts.

I thought I would say a few words about the process of editing posts. The writer in me has struggled to get certain posts out. That sort of takes away the natural writing process. Google will ignore you if you don’t do what they want. That is to name and categorise posts, to tag everything, and to write SEO keywords for each post. I was fantastically enthusiastic when I first started writing about walking. I had only joined a walking group and I don’t know what took me so long to do it. Getting out of London and going for a very long walk, can be very inspiring.

 

More words from the editor, then I shall get back to more tales from my walkabouts.

 

 

The devil is in the detail. Being a walker, sometimes a walk leader & photographer & writer, I have my work cut out for me.

I have been working a lot on editing & I noticed a typo on one of my recent blogs.  I only looked back because I had been getting a lot of pings and track backs, I was curious as to what was happening. I don’t understand pings & track backs but I think it boils down to people spamming the site. They may place their advert on your post, or a link. 

Looking back, over old posts turned into a good idea. Often as a writer I’m excited as I’m writing my point of view or about a place I have visited. It’s so easy to miss a minor detail that can totally ruin an otherwise good post. Thanks for alerting me spammers! Since then I go back to old posts every now & again and really enjoy the process of editing. Adding, taking away, and remembering facts I hadn’t mentioned. Editing is cool. 

Back to my walkabouts. Where I have been in the last few weeks.

The answer is blowing in the wheat!

This sea wheat grass is always stunning  to look at, it stands alone against the sky & against the sea, blowing in the wind. Magical.

 

I walked from Rye to Hastings again a tough walk with a lot of steep ascents and descents. Just over 14 miles, a circular walk from Lewes, a fantastic walk, but the last 4 miles were tough. At the highest peak in the South Downs we were 590 feet above sea level.

The fantastic spacious South Downs is an excellent place to walk, it took over 5 hours of walking. I’m planning to do two more walks in August and will go back to my 35mm film.

 

The first walk I’m doing is Lewes to Saltdean which I have done before but not with the group so I will be interested to see what route they take.

A gateway to the Sea at Dover

 

After a lovely day out but not quite clear enough to see France.

More from Dover next post.

 


 

Jul
2014

Writing blogs & Photography in posts

 Photography in posts

I have learned that Photography in posts is an essential part of blogging. After a conversation with a work colleague, I failed to convey any real sense about why I continue to use film instead of digital. Still, even after getting my film developed, I have to decide on maybe 3- 5 pictures to publish in any given blog. I walk, I write about it I take a few pictures. I don’t want to get technical. How do you even choose a digital camera.!

All my cameras have been given to me, and none of them have lasted! SEE some interesting quotes about photography, below.A gate in village St Cirq Lapopie

A gate in village, St Cirq Lapopie

https://petapixel.com/2014/05/29/70-inspirational-quotes-photographers/

As always summer in Brixton is a joy to behold!  

Sitting at my desk trying to be productive; the sound of SIRENS going past the window every five minutes, cars zooming down the road at top speed, people shouting into their mobile phones or just shouting generally, to themselves or someone else, is my background soundtrack. 

 

I‘m still not 100% sure whether I really want to do the 14 miles walk Rye to Hastings. But I’m getting claustrophobic.  Neighbor’s to either side of me, (A party last night,) possibly another one tonight!. I think I’m going to have to go on the walk

There I have talked myself into it again. I may come back bedraggled with sunstroke but I will give it a go.

 

My last trip to France was a bit fraught what with the train and taxi strike to contend with

I LOVE this clock in the centre of Cahors. It was an exceedingly hot day and we stopped off here to have a coffee and listen to a sound check for a band performing that evening, so it was HOT & LOUD.

 

clock in Cahors

Getting to Cahors from London left me slightly frazzled, ditto coming back, and to top it all the temperature was peaking around 34 Celsius on some days. 

Not my ideal weather by any means. I did not do a lot of walking, far too hot, but there are dedicated walkers passing through the village of Montcuq every day as part of a pilgrimage they do. It’s a famous walk they do and one year I may even do it. Who knows?

This cobbler had a unique window display of miniature shoes, a picture I did not take, due to being without a camera phone, and having little film left; and this is where my question about photography is now really coming into play.

cobblers in Cahors

Having a film restricts the number of photos you can take, because of the time, & the cost of film development. I like the process admittedly, as I don’t know exactly what I’m going to get. I’m going to try another old digital camera that has been given to me and see how I get on with that. Another thing I love about 35mm film is the quality of the photographs, they have a more artistic look about them, which is difficult to describe.

 

name of river?

The river Lot runs through Cahors and onward down towards an area we visited for a picnic by the river and to visit a historic village called Saint-Cirq-Lapopie.

A photograph is equivalent to a thousand words. How could you describe everything you have seen on every walk you have gone to? A collection of photos with a few snippets is probably sufficient. Depending on whether I have anything significant to say about an area of life in general, a blog can really only say so much.

Before visiting France I spent a nice weekend in Newcastle and the coast and the weather was perfect. June has to be my favorite month.

Someone sailing away- wish it was me

perfect day in june tynemouthA perfect day in Tynemouth this photo could be anywhere it was truly lovely, very relaxing.

port of Tyne june 2014

One of my very favorite sights has to be the bridges over the Tyne, this was taking from the riverside having pub lunch on a Sunday in June.

tyne at nightThe night before walking back from The Cluny having seen The Rezillos,(not seen them since about 1979 at Middlesbrough Rock Garden )

It was a beautiful evening, there was hardly anyone around as well which was strange. The revellers for some reason don’t make it down to the river!! They stay in town.

Then off to a Dover walk around 12 miles
A gateway to the Sea at Dover

A gateway to the Sea at Dover

 

White cliffs of Dover

White cliffs of Dover

 

 

Wild flowers on cliff top Dover

Fantastic wildflowers on cliff top in Dover

Last but not least… I did not expect to see these on my walk.…..

Very curious creatures, they ran towards us as they were extremly curious

Very curious creatures, they ran towards us as they were extremely curious

 

Yes walking can be interesting at times, you have to keep on going and you never know what you might come across.

 

Until next time

Best Wishes

Julie

 

Jun
2014

What makes a good day out?

Apart from a change of scenery what else makes for a good day out? 

Good company, weather, and a confident leader can all add up to make a very good day out. I am a walk leader, therefore, I appreciate how difficult that role can be. You need to know exactly where you are going, how long it takes, where the loo breaks are (if there are any!) what time the trains are and find a pleasing place for both picnic and pub lunch. It’s quite a responsibility! especially with a large group.

Madelon is a member of East Finchley Walking group. She kindly suggested taking me out on this walk. It felt good to let someone else take charge. 

We started at MILFORD ON SEA which seemed a bit complicated & tricky to get to. As always when going out on walks, it’s usual to take a tube or train to one of the mainline stations. This time it was Waterloo; then followed by a local bus. Perhaps it’s revisiting with an overnight stay. ?  It was a lovely visit, although it included a lot of travelling which meant not enough time to have a really good day out.

Trudging along on the shingles towards Hurst Castle. Summer was on the Horizon but it still felt far away.

 

Hurst Castle is situated at the seaward end of the shingle spit that extends 1.5 miles from Milford-On-Sea.

I felt a strange sense of isolation walking along the quiet beach. Shingles are tough to walk on. We took the less pleasing option, which was not to take the ferry over the water to the pub for lunch. Which in hindsight would have made for a more enjoyable day. Instead we walked back the same way, along the shingles. It got a bit monotonous. As Ramblers we are used to this kind of walking!

The end of the spit, only three-quarters of a mile from the Isle of Wight, and the views from the top of the center keep are spectacular, so I had been told!

Hurst Castle was the perfect location to defend the western approach to the Solent. The castle was built by Henry VIII as one of a chain of coastal fortresses and was completed in 1544.

The nature resort after the coastal walk
Remote & wild

Remote & wild

a little boat

 

 

 

We are all Black Sheep here.

We are all Black Sheep here.!

 

I tried not to think of such images but couldn’t help it, I imagined fights and deaths as it was a smugglers paradise some years ago.

NO BUILDINGS & NEARLY SUMMER

NEARLY SUMMER- looking towards The Isle of Wight

I WANT TO MARRY A LIGHTHOUSE KEEPER

I WANT TO MARRY A LIGHTHOUSE KEEPER!

 

There’s something romantic about the lighthouse, it’s remote and secure, cut off from everybody else.

I recently saw a film called Frank a black comedy (loosely based on the character Frank Sidebottom.) Maggie Gyllenhaal sings a haunting melancholy song, I want to marry a lighthouse keeper. The film premiered at the 2014 Sundance film festival. It was released theatrically in Ireland and Britain on 9 May 2014.

It’s worth a look

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wptv2iDdTZM

All for now

 

Julie

 

 

May
2014

Excel/ Docklands & Trinity Buoy Wharf

 Excel/Docklands Trinity Buoy Wharf & London

Walks along the Thames, hold a myriad of possibilities. This particular new route was a delight. Previous to this day I’d never heard of Trinity Buoy Wharf.  It’s always a pleasure to get a bit lost & stumble upon somewhere interesting. I am especially fond of the Docklands.

looking back towards the dome

 

I took the tube to North Greenwich and a cable car over the river,(fantastic views)

This was my first time ever to venture on the cable car, to the Excel Centre. If you take your oyster card with you on this journey, you can use it the same way you do on the tube or Thames Ferry.

The lure of the sun and river pulled me back out, of the conference centre.

As I sat out on the steps eating my lunch I noted there was a bridge that you could walk over. It was the Queen Victoria Dock Bridge. This took me along a very quiet residential area alongside the river.

Then I veered towards the industrial part of the area, not quite knowing where I was going, but I did recognise some of the more industrial parts from a previous walk.

I eventually found a path alongside a busy road that was directing me towards Canary Wharf & East India Docks
Trinity Buoy Wharf

I slipped off the main road and found myself in this little nook. It is part residential, and overall industrial, it hosts an artistic hub. For further information about workplaces see below.

Look at  http://www.trinitybuoywharf.com

The other side of the sculputre music vibe man

The other side of the sculpture music vibe man

 

This instrument picks up on the rhythms of the tide and chimes music, I would have loved to have been there at night on a full moon.

They do have a café where live music is played but you need to book well in advance as it is a tiny space.

To the left of it is an instrument that reads the moon tides.

To the left of this strange-looking sculpture is an instrument that reads the moon tides

 

 

The entrance to the Wharf has a varied display of street art .Sculpure & murals.

The entrance to the Wharf has a varied display of street art Sculpture & murals. 

Walking along the Thames from Woolwich via Greenwich to Blackheath

As always the best way forward is to put one foot in front of the other and there you go. The river walks are my favourite. There is so much life and history along the riverside.

Thames Barrier

Sculpture on Thames.

 

Old Barge Along River

 

Until next time, keep putting one foot in front of the other, you never know what you might find.

 

Apr
2014

On the road to nowhere

 This walk often felt like being- On the road to nowhere

Following directions isn’t always easy. We had a print out of a walk, I had found online. It was very detailed but difficult to follow, it felt like we were on the road to nowhere stuck in a field not knowing South from North. 

Moving up- dusty path upwards

 

which way is South?

Map not included!

Over the years though, I have improved and continue to push myself out of my comfort zones. Other skills required to be a Good Walk Leader are:

  • Being punctual!
  • Thinking ahead,
  • Booking trains in advance, (that can be very time consuming, and very confusing)
  • Wearing the right clothes for the right weather,

Last but not least, just getting out and doing a walk when I might not feel like it.

HOLY COW IN SOUTH DOWNS with two new borns..

HOLY COW IN SOUTH DOWNS with two newborns.

 

I had printed the Walk instructions from Ramblers Routes( 09 )  This walk was not as straightforward as most of it was in fields

Uhh. Which way is South?

It takes time to learn these things. Not everybody was brought up in the country reading ordnance survey maps, I didn’t have a  map or a reception to get google maps on my phone. It’s fair to say I wasn’t prepared. Still, we managed in the end.

Trying to make head or tail of the instructions while standing in the middle of a field! It was turn left here, turn right then left at a hedge then over a stile 30 meters from a fence facing West, etc…then bear south! (Help!)

looking back towards Ilford a lot of fields a lot of sheep

 

On top of any walk, there are usually ‘hidden extras’, walking to & fro from the station. Meandering around a town or village looking for somewhere to eat or drink. (In this case there wasn’t a town to walk about in!).

 We arrived at a place called Iford not to be confused with Ilford.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Iford/@50.819575,-0.0014775,12.63z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x47df62aaa79989fb:0x93136a09044c2bda!8m2!3d50.8404289!4d-0.0171791

It is officially a village and civil parish in the Lewes District of East Sussex. It does not have a shop café or pub, only a church, and a few random houses. Had I misread something? I was anticipating some kind of vineyard or Spanish Cafe towards the end of the walk.! Where did I get that from!

Now, what was that written in the walk description?
Still it was 28th of March and we were glad of some fresh air and light. 
At last the days were getting longer. At the top of a hill, we cross the South Downs Way carrying on with slight ascents and descents and endless seclusion, we pass Breaky bottom Vineyard, but no sign of any cafe/wine tasting sessions.

It got a bit confusing again after this as there weren’t clear directions as to how to get to the coastal town of Saltdean. We walked and walked until we got down to a football pitch and then came out to a road with some holiday homes. We headed to the main road, which was the main road to Brighton then and jumped on a bus and headed for the Bright lights.

Create Maps or search from 80 million at MapMyFitness
Until next time, keep on keeping on.