October 2022

October 2022 creeps in slowly


I walked a lot in October 2022  mainly short walks  (between 4 to 9 miles) The 1st week in October was in and around Montcuq and the Lot valley. It’s difficult to feel too optimistic, about life at present, but go forward we must. October is a lovely month in many ways and I’ve been out and about a lot this month.

October 2022 has been a mixed bunch so far

Despite the Government Shenanigans and the invasion of Ukraine, causing chaos and misery;  my working life seems more settled. October  2022 is a new season and a new beginning of sorts and I feel that tentatively it’s maybe time to start looking forwards again.

The Hill Walking retreat in Scotland is now a possibility in 2023

It was cancelled in Lockdown, 2021 and this year I just could not get that together. This October was in France for the 3rd time of the year, visiting my mum at a home, from the end of September to the beginning of October.

Here are a few of my photos taken from my walkabouts in October 2022.

An old car wreck, being swamped in Ivy in the area of Trejoules France.

A wee deceased baby bird on a windowsill in Montcuq town


last year I came across a dead magpie in Camberwell, it was the first time ever I saw the beauty of the bird’s feathers. Mostly we think of the Mighty Black and white Magpie.

It wasn’t until I picked up a couple of feathers, that my eyes opened and saw how vivid the peacock-like colours were in the full sunlight. Up close the feathers gleamed, with bright petrol blue, and shiny forest greens.

Some years ago I found a dead bird in Railton Road, Brixton /Herne Hill, London, it had been killed by a cat.

Not sure what type of bird it was, as there were only clumps of feathers left in heaps scattered over the pavement and across the road. When picking up a few feathers I felt they were still warm, the colours were gorgeous. I took a photograph and posted it on Twitter to see if anyone could identify them.  The feathers were like leopard skin markings but darker.

A few suggestions were tweeted back to me with suggestions such as a falcon.

It was too small for that and a wild guess tells me, that Brixton is certainly not a haven for wild birds. I think it was just a sparrow or something similar but the colours were vivid and not something you would notice until looked at it closely.


From dead birds to sleeping cats.!


Purrfect pussy cat, Having a mid-afternoon snooze around the back of Montcuq, lying on top of the free bookcase.


A disbanded old farmhouse was found while roaming about.



Out of my depth, Lendou-en Quercy France


I decided to take my wicked stepsister’s advice and do a walk alone of which instructions were few,

The vague direction was to turn left around the back of the house via the woods or go up the hill further! (JUST TO SAY, THIS WAS THE FIRST TIME I HAD EXPLORED THIS AREA) I went up the hill further, expecting at some point to come down the hill prompt, but the road went around and around. An Italian car passed me coming and going, I felt conspicuous! and I felt a bit panicky.

 lost and aware,  it will soon get dark, and the only option was to keep going.


Going downhill then following the road bearing left, in the far distance there was a sight of a road. Feeling a slight sense of relief that this might help, I spotted a dog! it equally spotted me, It awoke from its slumber and stood up to stare at me.

The dog got up slowly and walked towards me!

(A lot of the french farmhouses have open lawns without gates or fences and it’s something I watch out for when wandering) from what I could see it was a sort of big fat dog of no real description same colours as a Doberman (which I’m not a fan of) but not as big.

I was scared. and couldn’t go forward in case it attacked me.

so I walked backwards and phoned my stepsister to come and get me.  He may have been harmless but I wasn’t taking any chances.

She managed to locate me, with only the name of a house to go by and pulled up some 10 minutes later. standing still and quiet as a mouse, by another house the dog seemed to have gone until  I saw him sitting looking at me behind a tree!!


The sky grew dark looming ominously over a field of dead sunflowers

Back to civilisation, of towns, bridges and rivers.

Magnificent side view at Pont Valentre Lot valley

picture of a 14th century bridge fort in Cahors Lot Valley

Pont Valentre Or the Devil’s Bridge as known by some.


Before taking the train from Cahors to Toulouse I had time in hand and wondered around Cahors

life is what happens when you are busy making other plans? well, it seems I’m forever intending to do things that never happen, and one is staying a night in Cahors. Although I have visited the town centre briefly on various occasions, with my mum and step-dad, this was the 1st time I actually roamed about and saw a couple of markets and just generally mozied about a bit


Friday, 21st October 2022

From the village through a muddy path out into open space.

A lonely tree, throwing shapes onto the horizon


The name Theydon Bois sounds curious and somewhat out of place as an underground station.  It sounds a bit French to me. Reading about its origins on Wikipedia it seems it is more old English 12th century. Although the last bit Bois was spelt that way because someone in the Parish could speak french.! The past is usually strange and I can’t quite get my head around that.


The walk was ok once in the forest and the village Theydon Bois is a typical English village with a green and a big pub the Bull taking centre stage. I joined up with the South Bank ramblers on a moody on-off rainy day, unsure whether to bother. It was worth it.

Light slips through the forest and shines on the bark.


A circular walk from Theydon Bois, through fields, crossing the M25 and into Epping Forest, where the route passes the remains of ancient Iron Age hill fort Ambresbury Bank and a deer sanctuary.
Much of the walk is along paths and gently undulating, although there are a few steeper climbs.

Autumn mushrooms, growing in Epping Forest

Mushrooms Rock


Moping about never done anyone no good!

I dare say many will argue with that. After returning from France I  made my way over to Euston to catch the exhibition IN THE AIR. It was the last day, and I was glad I made the effort. Previous to that I had visited on. a Monday and the space was closed. Instead, I ventured off to try the Quakers House Cafe!. It was a great little space and a marvellous old building. Well worth a visit. The Wellcome Collection always put on thoughtful, contemporary exhibits.https://wellcomecollection.org/exhibitions/YjiSFxEAACIAcqpb


Air moves freely around the world, regardless of Land borders, and can circle the globe in as little as two weeks.

On a massive cinematic screen, a group of us watched a plane flying over the fields in Gaza, the film showed a low-flowing plane, flying over the field, spraying the crops with herbicides. There is a direct link that herbicides, cause cancer. Just another weapon to kill. The exhibition showed many other examples of the use of chemicals. As well as the illegal use of white phosphorus bombings.

 It is heavy shit.

In everyday life, it’s happening, including in Ukraine now. We have it easy but that doesn’t mean we are living in some kind of exclusive Utopia and it can’t happen to us. It’s our problem as well.

For more info:://www.hrw.org/report/2009/03/25/rain-fire/israels-unlawful-use-white-phosphorus-gaza


See a previous post Walking With The Beast

inspired by the Wellcome collection


Coming up


I’m revisiting Galway for the first time in maybe 20 years! I can’t believe it’s that long and that I’m that old but hey I’m alive.






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