Dec
2016

Building Bridges/Burning Bridges?

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My blogs are changing all the time-some are full of stories- others are brief and to the point. Well- It’s the end of the year, and as tempting as it is to do a re-run/replay, I think the verdict is still out.  What direction I’m taking? Who knows? Walking about London, I’m still in awe of the bridges I cross.  I very rarely get tired of these walks.

Looking back at Vauxhall

 

Life may appear to be steady, but in reality is far from it. A big change is well overdue. I have plans in motion and circumstances will change, but unlikely to be at the strike of Midnight on New Years Eve. Oh, if only Cinderella!

I have been writing this blog since 2011 and those of you who know me may understand, that I have a lot of creative ideas I want to explore. Having made a start with various studies and projects, it is a  matter of keeping at it & finding the enthusiasm to carry on. Walking is a big help, it’s a great way to think, unwind and get out in the fresh air.

There are still hundreds of new walks to be discovered and further adventures to be had in 2017. I will be sending out a little Newsletter to some old friends, new acquaintances and others inviting you all to subscribe/comment on my blog. Plans to create a new website in 2017 with different types of writing is on the cards, so let’s see how it all pans out.

In the meantime,  here are a couple of walks done in December.

 

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Nov
2016

The Lake District

The Lake District Autumn 2016

Taking the train from London Euston, I had a quiet carriage front facing seat, which was a good start. The train was heading to Glasgow & was packed. As the train took off I reminded myself that I must go to Glasgow for a weekend.

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 I have been meaning to go to the yearly Celtic Festival hosted there every January; the live broadcast of various gigs on Radio 3 every year, is as  close as I’ve got to it.

cnv00023 I think I would like to keep going.  Just keep moving on -from one place to the next. Continue reading

Oct
2016

New Ventures

 

Navigating a 8 mile walk somewhere around Berwick Sussex & The Devils Punch Bowl

In my previous blog, I mentioned I was going to try & learn some new walks. True to my words, I went off armed with some printed instructions & headed towards Berwick Station East Sussex to meet a walking ‘buddy’

Getting to know Berwick in Sussex

Arriving at Victoria early was fine, but I missed my connection from Brighton to Berwick. I had a vague memory of the area. My first walk with the South Bank Ramblers covered this area. Consequently I was late & the pouring rain looked set to continue for the rest of the day. Luckily there was a café/pub right next to the station at Berwick, so we could have a coffee & plan what to do.

Like a lot of new ventures you have to try more than once to make it a success.

My walking companion had a good grasp of reading a map so I happily let her take the lead. I had taken the initiative to organise the walk, but the rain and me being late meant we had to cut it short. I was grateful to her having an ordnance survey map and being able to read it. Miraculously the rain stopped within five minutes of us starting the walk and then poured down again about five minutes before we finished.

Despite the fact we only clocked up just under five miles, we walked over dry hard fields, lumpy  ground and such. My legs the following day; ankles, feet &  calf’s in particular were painful. My feet are usually the problem and they were throbbing like mad having worn the boots from 8am to 8pm . I’m obviously going to have to wear them in.

Devils Punch Bowl and Gibbet Hill  10 mile Hike.

Into the trees

Into the trees

   Magic Mushrooms in Autumn         

MAGIC MUSHROOM

http://www.meetup.com/Explorer-UK/ Organise regular walking Day trips and weekends. You can book online.

I joined this MEET UP GROUP on line.

Tom will purchase your tickets and lead the walk. It’s a good way to get to know areas and meet people.  40 minutes outside of London from Waterloo we were in Haslemere. 

It was a perfect Autumn day for a ten-mile hike along the Greensand Way to The Devil’s Punch Bowl on the borders of the South Downs National Park.

MAGIC MUSHROOM

MAGIC MUSHROOM

Caterpillar.

Caterpillar at the Devils Punch Bowl, beautiful colours, so vibrant.

 

We enjoyed beautiful views across the Bowl’s natural amphitheatre before climbing out the other side to see even further from the second highest point in Surrey. Along the way  visiting the Sailor’s Stone and discover its gruesome history, before finishing the walk at a lovely pub a few minutes from the train station.

 

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By the by I like to get inspired through reading.

 

I finished reading Bill Bryson comical journal about travelling today in the UK, and felt inspired to keep on writing about my days out and walking adventures. 

Neil Roberston (my uncle) sent me this link regarding magic mushrooms!

The Magic Mushroom pics on your blog look like Fly I Agaric. For MM pics see: http://http://www.magic-mushrooms.net/gallery.html#.WBXvZxmnwj0

 

I knew they weren’t literally magic mushrooms that get you high,but they sort of look Magic. 

 

Avoir Farewell.

 

Sep
2016

What happened in September?

ARchives from  my Picture Gallery 2016

Good question, what did happen in September 2016?

It is very rare for me to miss a blog, in fact I have published a post every month since 2012. Having dug out the photos from my gallery, I see I had an eventful September in 2016.

GIRL AT LAKE

Alligator sand sculpture

 

According to my picture gallery, I was in Hastings, Palma and France! at least that’s what the pictures show. The above sand sculpture ,while crumbling slightly, still looked impressive. This man-made lake is a very relaxing hang out. A perfect place to cool off. A 20 -30 minute walk from Montcuq village. Since I visited here last, I have heard they now have a pay in car park. I guess I will take a look next month May 2019 when I return to France.

 

Lake near Montcuq on a perfect summer day.

green tree green lake

Fantastic walking area in Hastings

Hastings Country Park, bigger than you think

 

Rye to Hastings, or Hastings to Rye, either way this is one of the most difficult walks I have done, and I still haven’t cracked how to do it exactly without the aid of someone else. I’m sure I could do so, if I lived nearer and had time to get to know it. It remains one of my favorite walks all the same. Best done in May or June.

Palma was my first ever all inclusive holiday. I know I’m maybe the only person on the planet who has never sampled this experience.! I had to try it once and there were many good things about it. Not so much the free bar as the types of drinks you could get weren’t great. Unless you like getting pissed on cheap cocktails.

in the mountains of Palma

The hotel was really good, the pools were nice and the food was plentiful, probably all that free food was too much for me.  I don’t know what it was exactly, I felt a bit imprisoned because I couldn’t walk anywhere really and I felt the main resorts were just full of german tourists out to get totally drunk! not my cup of tea but perhaps if I had stayed in the centre of Palma and just taken a couple of days out at a beach I might have enjoyed that much more. My first and probably last all inclusive type of holiday.

 

 

 

Aug
2016

Finding New Walks

Southern Railways

 

Disappointed that Southern Railways haven’t got their act together yet. Not sure what’s going on with them exactly, but I went onto their website and tried about 5 times to book a ticket to Bishopstone near Lewes, for a 12 mile walk.  If someone has hacked their website it’s not that surprising -but- please sort it out!  The ticket office at Herne Hill was closed on Saturday & usually get a good price ticket from them.  Buying from the ticket machine would cost about £26, but £17.50 on line. I gave up in the end, and opted out. I’m not happy about having missed a walk but will have to make up for it some other way.

not sure what they are.. should have taken note perhaps!

I am planning some new walks, & have found another South Bank Walker who has agreed to try out some walks with me around the Lewes area.

I have finally bought a new printer  & scanner which means I can scan & email the routes to her and we can get out in the Autumn. It is about time to start planning some new adventures. I have booked for  a week in the Lake District in Autumn. The last time I was near that area in Penrith was the Blue Moon Festival, and we all took some illegal substances, I can’t remember the details but it was either acid or magic mushrooms, and everything was either totally hilarious or really scary.! That was a long time ago. I do remember it being a very pretty area though and Keswick was/is a popular tourist , so it will good to revisit the area.

Cactus in Greenhouse
at Physic Gardens

Revisiting  old places

I’m pleased to say that I revisited the Chelsea Physic Gardens recently, I had mentioned it when talking on the Robert Elms Show on BBC LONDON a couple of weeks ago. I bravely volunteered to present my ideal day out in London on the radio ( a regular feature on his Saturday show)  and the Physic Gardens was my first port of call.

 

SIR HANS SLOANE originally from Northern Ireland

 

I often walk to Chelsea as it’s not a bad walk from Brixton. I had family over last weekend & took them to visit.

The Garden has been running talks throughout the summer on the subject of scents. It was a coincidence that one of the women who came on my Seven Sisters Walk was there as a tour leader &  led a large group around the garden explaining the origins and different sections of plants from all over the world. It is hard to retain all the information about the history and use of plants for medicinal & other uses such as perfume and some cosmetics. So I can only recommend to try it for yourself.

http://www.chelseaphysicgardens.co.uk

 

Medicine Cabinet

Medicine Cabinet

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