Mar
2017

Exploring East Sussex

Exploring East Sussex

I have been exploring East Sussex, ever since joining a walking group. Armed with my  OS LANDRANGER map 198, I set off. Although straightaway it’s clear that wasn’t going to be adequate. The map covers some of Brighton and some of Lewes; it went as far as Firle; but not as far as Charleston House -which is sort of where I wanted to go. You might understand I am still getting the hang of maps. Had I done more homework i might have been better prepared. See below for a more definitive guide.

https://www.localwalks.co.uk/sussex-walks-blog/glynde-walks-map

Weather-wise it was a bit grey and looking bleakly overcast.  I had visited a few weeks earlier; it had been snowing so this climate was an improvement.

I was recognising landmarks and getting my bearings in the area. The village cafe was also closed until the 17th of March. It would have been nice to have had a tea break and looked at my map, the reward for my efforts was sitting on a wall by the bus stop to rest my feet.

 

From a young age, my instinct was to get up and explore. I moved on a regular basis so was keen to get to know the areas I moved to.

I was used to going off for walks without a definite destination. (maybe it’s called drifting )My vague plan today, was as good as it got.

On this day out, I got as far as the end of Glynde village, uncertain as to how to get across the A27 without getting run over.

It was another 5 miles to Charleston. It seemed easier to get the train to Glynde and walk from there to Charleston house from there. Or an alternative plan would be to take a train to Charleston House (is there a train to Charleston house)? and walk back to Lewes which is about 8.5miles.

 

Frogs, cows, and other friends of mine!

frogs mating near Lewes South Downs

Real cute frogs having a go!

 

Whilst out on the South Downs, I was on my own and not making any noise I just stuck my head over the railing and these sweet frogs swam towards me,

 

There were quite a few of them swimming about. It was obviously the mating season. . Confirmation that there is so much wildlife ‘out there’ not something we are aware of living in cities.

Many years ago a frog did manage to get into my garden at Railton road once and was living in a big glass jar that had been lying empty in the garde some time, it was a thrill but a short lived affair!

Being out in nature walking alone gives me time to unwind and let my thoughts run free. Returning from my walk heading towards the Golf club and just about to walk out of the downs back into Lewes, this dear creature waddled slowly towards me.  Really cool.

Animal Welfare

Testing products on animals is one thing I am totally against; as well as factory farming. I walked through the field looking at the cows wondering what sort of life they had, they seemed content from what I could sense. They were out in the fields grazing.

On returning home I eventually worked out how to redeem my code to download the ordinance survey map onto my phone.

I  was about to buy my return ticket for the following week to Lewes to continue my walk, engineering works were scheduled for the next three weeks in the area.

Engineering Works

It just puts a spanner in the works. It makes the day too long. Lewes is near Brighton, getting to Lewes from Brixton is a two-hour journey each way. Add on engineering works, & any other diversions makes for a tedious day.

Off to Newcastle 1st of April.

 

Feb
2017

Destinations & Travel

It’s good to be inspired. I recently attended Destinations & Travel show, at Olympia.

This was my first visit to the Destinations and Travel show . I will definately go again.  I found it was interesting listening to Nicholas Crane speak at The Stamford Writers stage about how he researched and wrote his latest book.  Most people will have seen him on the BBC series Coast.  He was an impressive speaker. His talk covered about 5,000 years in 40 minutes. Not an easy task.

The making of The British Landscape

Guardian review 30/09/ 2016 (extract from The Making of The British Landscape)

“The first “little ice age” hit around 6700BC. About 500 years later, a huge North American lake broke through its dam and dumped such a huge amount of fresh water into the Atlantic that the Gulf Stream shut down. Temperatures plummeted, trees died, sea water pushed into rivers and Britain’s landscape changed again. Only 200 years later – a geological blink – a tsunami crashed over Doggerland. Britain became an island and isolated”-

  Exploring the British Isles and beyond

Finding further inspiration to get out and explore the island that I live on.

Julie Bradbury has a current show on ITV, where she walks along some of the most picturesque landscapes in Britain.  Her walks are always on a perfect summer’s day!  Interesting  & picturesque without being excessively long or difficult. See below for the link to the fabulous Julia Bradbury.http://www.theoutdoorguide.co.uk/

Getting to know Lewes and the surrounding areas.

I may not have a team of experts behind me but that’s not going to stop me having a go. I’m getting better organised than ever. Considering my previous chaotic existence this is quite an achievement. !

Sheep spaced out on a Snowy day in Lewes/South Downs, Sussex

Lewes Sussex has been an area I have been venturing into on and off since joining a walking group, I now want to make my mark and learn to lead walks in this area. 

A friend from the South Bank Ramblers Group came along with me on a bleak mid winter’s day. I wasn’t sure where to start and had a few maps with ideas, but opted just to go the tourist office in the high street.http://www.lewes.gov.uk/tourism/

We kept it short as it was freezing we did a return from Lewes to the foot of Glynde and back again, then a brief walk around the town to the castle. We were rewarded with a fantastic vegetarian breakfast.
Laporte’s a French Café /Wholefood shop in Lansdowne Place Lewes. (Sadly closed down shortly after this post)

It really was the bleakest of days. We stopped to have a swift half while waiting for the train.  The pub is a five-minute walk from the railway station.

We walked over the bridge, where I noticed the cloud parted slightly, the glowing full moon in the day time sky glimmered like a jewel.

I frantically struggled to switch my phone on & then the same clouds closed like a pair of curtains! If you look very carefully by enlarging the picture you will see a bright white cloud, closing back over the moon.!

Until next time, keep on keeping, more adventures from me at the end of March .

 

Jan
2017

Guildford to Godalming

 Guildford to Godalming

This was probably just one of thost things, but trying to book for the programmed walk Guildford to Godalming, was off the scale in terms of having some kind of mental deadlock! The walk was a doddle in comparison to planning it! A breeze in fact, less than it’s printed 6.5 mile description.  Last weekend in between planning for a job interview I decided I was going to do this walk, & buy the ticket in advance as you do.

It had been a hard week, I needed a walk, & some fresh air, no question about that. I checked in the South Bank newsletter for details of a walk on Saturday and found the Guildform to Godalming walk to be a short enough and near enough walk to manage. 

 

Breaking Ice

Sometimes it just gets confusing

The newsletter & on-line South Bank Website said to  buy a return to Godalming and get the 9.30am getting off at Guildford  meeting at 10.15am on the 21st of January.  I typed in London Waterloo to Godalming  9.30am. I’m looking but there isn’t a 9.30 train! to Godalming. I called one of the leaders. Yes she tells me, the train is at 9.30am, she is looking at the website and she can see it, she sends me the link.

 

I tell her I’m looking at it too and there is no 9.30am train from Waterloo to Godalming. Something vital is missing in this conversation, but neither of us have a clue what.!

 

God damn it where the hell is Godamling anyway? It must be on the GUILDFORD LINE. Well it is but the 9.30am train from Waterloo isn’t going there, BUT  a train at 9am is going to Godalming, another at 10am and so on every hour.I can’t  buy a return from Waterloo at 9.30am to Godalming that stops at Guildford.  Fact.

I have to buy a return to Guildford and a single ticket form Godalming to  Guildford. For those of you still reading, (tell me about it!) please check this out!

How to pronounce Godalming! 

Elocution lesson  of the day folks.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eoh53gOFDXk

 

Guildford to Godalming

 

Well as you can see it’s a walk along the river just under a 2 hour walk. In hindsight perhaps I should have looked it up. The way I look at it though, is the Leaders are organising it, I’m just following. My job is to buy the ticket and join in! I am accredited walk leader but I simply don’t know the Surrey area.

It was a short but sweet walk.

We watched a swan take off in full flight along this river, a magnificent sight. I thought about taking a snap shot but it happened so unexpectedly I let it go.

Sweet Bridge en route to Godalming!

 

It was over far too quickly and I left the group at Farncombe Surrey. A bunch of the group wanted to have lunch at midday. The rest sat by the river to eat a packed lunch. I decided to split & I carried on to Godalming alone.

 

Guildford Swan Lake

Dec
2016

Building Bridges/Burning Bridges?

London Bridges and other walks.

It’s always the same thing, the end of the year. Looking back and looking forward. What bridges are we building and which are we burning.?

Building Bridges or Burning Bridges.?

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 walking across London Bridges. Looking North and Looking South.

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.

 

Continue reading

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. I was headed for The Lake District and was excited.

cnv00024

 I have been meaning to go to the yearly Celtic Festival hosted there every January; the live broadcast of various gigs on Radio 3 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