Dec
2012

LONDON LIFE/MUSIC MACHINE

To Quote Bob Dylan

NO- Direction Back Home. 

 I had promised myself that I will do the Regents Canal walk before Xmas this year-but and let’s face it, the canal walk would likely end up in a pub.  Nothing wrong with that as such, apart from getting caught up with shoppers en route back home. I  am going to leave any walking trips until the proper bleak mid winter, when the air is crisp and clean . Less crowds, more space. My last canal walk, seemed like a busy highway, and we ended up dodging cyclists, joggers and prams. Such is London life.

Looking back at life in London

I have lived in London since about 1982 starting off in South Kensington, some time in North London, then to New Cross eventually settling into Brixton. I spent the years 1978-1982 going backwards and forwards from Newcastle to London, In those days I took off at a moments notice and had  sudden pangs of homesickness where I would hitch up the M1. For some years this was my mode of travel. I wouldn’t dream of it now.  That was to be young careless and free. I hasten to add, and skint! and skinny!.

Brixton was a vibrant place back then and there were lots of squats and coops. Perfect for the time. It was easy to find somewhere a bit run down and do a bit of work in it and live there rent free.

A bit of a shambles but when your young you don’t care about things like that , or at least our generation didn’t we thought it was great. I would like to see the artificial reality crew dealing with that lifestyle.!

London Underground

London is a massive place and I probably spent over 20 years going to gigs/trying to get bands together and music generally ruled my life. I’m old enough to remember when you could sit on the circle line ran all night and you could smoke and drink.! I have since become accustomed to avoiding the tube if /when possible, but it is convenient.

1979 In these days you could smoke on the tube and the circle line went around and around all night!

1979 In these days you could smoke on the tube and the circle line went around and around all night!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Much to talk about through the night! This was always welcome after a night in the MUSIC MACHINE .

I saw many bands at the Music Machine, The Psychedelic Furs in 1979 being a memorable one.
Typical flyer for the Music Machine.. zoom in and check the prices!! you get to see 3 bands for less than £3!

The last two years have seen me looking for adventures close to home. The world has gradually become a smaller and more expensive place to live. I don’t enjoy travelling in the way I used to.

 

It’s a toss-up as to what’s worse- sitting in traffic in a car, or being held up in a train because of engineering works. I  generally walk and cycle if I can. I understand other cities aren’t so bad. Living in London for all the fun I have had, it always had an other side to it. Driven by a power, I don’t relate to. I have mainly lived on the sidelines. Seeking out pleasure and fun, while juggling making some kind of a living. It is great to reconnect with my creative self, while still having a job to pay the bills.

 

 

Until next time keep on keeping on.

 

 

 

 

 

Nov
2012

This Monkey’s gone to Heaven! /Gone to Devon

 

The-Pixies-Monkey-Gone-To-He-9371

The Pixies –

“This monkey’s gone to heaven!”  –   Eh I mean, this writers gone to Devon. Oh well at least it rhymes .

Visiting Devon…

It can be a heavenly place and I have visited some beautiful spots. Unfortunately I don’t get the time to go off when visiting m y brother and young nephews. Perhaps when there older, we can go a bit further afield. I did try to find a walk with a group based in Devon, via the Ramblers website, but there was nothing near to Torquay on my recent visit. My brother had told me of a 13 mile walk from Brixham to – Kingswear. I would be happy for a 3- 5 mile walk on this occasion. there is a walk i can do from his house i have posted on previous occasions . I will consider this one next time I get the chance to stay a bit longer.

https://www.explorethesouthwestcoastpath.co.uk/brixham2kingswear.

MY FEET

Also, getting back to the feet, I haven’t walked any great distance in these walking shoes I bought recently from Clarks, size 6 and a half.  It is a weird one, the floppy toe syndrome! I can’t explain it I really can’t. The podiatrist offered a sort of explanation, which went a bit over my head.   There was some kind of operation that I could have but if it was anything like the surgical procedure to remove a verruca I don’t think I will bother. I have yet to get into the habit of strapping my toes together to support them, but the podiatrist did show me how that was done! I will be  taking my ASIC running shoes as a back up, as they give me no problems at all, they are great but being white not suitable for muddy paths etc.

Pictures from Devon and blog about walk will be on its way too you soon.

The Pixies This Monkey’s Gone to Heaven

keeping it short, keeping it real.

Oct
2012

Thinking about walking- thinking about writing!

Seaford to Glynde

GIANT MUSHROOM

 

I wasn’t sure how Rural Sussex would photograph especially it being Autumn and the colours being so vivid, but I quite like the effect. I know you can use effects on most smartphones to Black & White, but I vouch that film is very different to digital and has a different outcome. Well at least in printed format,

Seaford to Glynde

Walking takes a certain amount of stamina, this was an 11-mile walk in Sussex starting at Seaford to Glynde all in the countryside. We walked up Northwards inland over vast open spaces and quite hilly in parts.We had glorious autumn weather that day but still, the earth was damp with residues of rain from the previous nights of heavy rain. 

A few of us fell over including myself, as parts of the walk were chalky and damp downhill and we kept skidding.

My legs were hurting and I was too hot, covered in mud! preoccupied about not having the right walking gear and annoyed that I had burned my only pair of walking trousers in a rare ironing frenzy!

Such is life.

The walk started at Seaford over the downs, walking in the countryside to Berwick Church, I had mentioned the church on my first blog, as we walked there from Charleston House.

After a pub lunch, the group seemed to split into the Fast and Slow Walkers, I assigned myself to the fast group but we had to keep stopping to wait for the others in case they got lost. I’m sorry to say, but that got very tedious after a while.

Romantic Berwick Church Autumn 2012

I have to walk everywhere now

I am from Newcastle but have lived in London now longer than I lived in Newcastle.. Still, it was my old stomping ground and I still truly love the centre of Newcastle with its magnificent bridges. I have been revisiting in the last few years.


 

We tried to walk to the now famous Cluny music venue on the Friday night we arrived, it seemed such a lovely romantic walk along the Tyne, however, we were on the wrong side of the river, going in the wrong direction!

We backtracked & opted for a gig in the Westgate Road Newcastle, near my old primary school; A Ramones cover band was due to play.

We slipped into the Art Centre next door where they were having Tango lessons! We had a beer and watched that while waiting to see the Ramones cover band. Some contrast!

 

Best Wishes
Julie
Sep
2012

Rye- Hastings walk

Rye to  Hastings 13 miles

FH000011

A brisk walk through a wonderful section of the Kent Coast, following parts of the Saxon Shore Way.

Thus- described by walk leader Margaret Wasdell.

 

An early start from Charing Cross we took the Hastings train then changed to a local network train to  Rye.  We walked through the picturesque village of  Rye,  and downhill across a small bridge over a river at Brede; then up a steep hill, catching a glimpse of the sea as we walked towards an ancient village called Winchelsea.

There we had a picnic under the sun in the churchyard of St Thomas the Martyr; incidentally, Spike Milligan was buried there.

 After half an hour lunch we walked on and over some fields towards a 16th-century castle built by Henry the  V111. 

We then followed a path alongside the Royal Military Canal & walked briskly for 30- 40 minutes. Then arriving at an open road towards the seafront of Pett Level & further on until approaching The Fairlight National Trust Reserve.

We then walked up into some woodland taking us up to Fairlight Cliffs.
The walk provided us with a stunning view out into the sea and led into Hastings Country Park from there on the walk consisted of many steep ascents and descents eventually arriving at Hastings.
 FH000010

 PETT LEVEL SEAFRONT

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A VIEW FROM FAIRLIGHT CLIFFS

FH000009Did I mention the steep ascents and descents into Hastings?FH000012

Up and down and Up, and—Down, and ….

FH000013You get the picture I’m sure!

It was an invigorating walk and well worth the effort to get there.

It’s worth joining up with a walking group as they have experienced guides which without I would have given up. I’m not much of a map reader, but eventually, as I get out more I will start to learn

Until next time.

Enjoy the views

Julie

Aug
2012

The Charleston House Experience

My first ever ‘Ramble’

Glynde to Berwick via Charleston House, Sussex

Having pondered for some years about joining a walking group I eventually met with a bunch of  Ramblers at Victoria London and introduced myself. I wanted to start walking and getting to know places that were accessible from London on public transport and could be done within a day . Ok it’s a far cry from walking the Himalayas but it’s a start. Taking the train from Victoria we changed at Lewes and took a short journey to a place called Glynde.  We walked past a terrace of quaint cottages and then walked across a motorway over to a field and headed towards  Firle Place. Already I was in love, what a breath of fresh air. I needed this more than ever. I have walked around London for so many years now and as much as I love London,have to get out sometimes! We walked through Firle place  a historical national park and I felt like I had gone back in time. It was May and so the new-born lambs were out grazing on the grass and the flowers were blooming, it was so sweet, and so very refreshing after being cooped up at work all week.

After a few miles walking over fields we were at Charleston Farmhouse situated in the heart of the Sussex Downs.It’s called Farmhouse which is a bit misleading as it is more like an artist’s retreat hosting a stunning collection of art, much of the furnishing having been upholstered to its original plan by Laura Ashley.

 CHARLESTON FARMHOUSE

The place is unique and available guided tours give a fascinating insight into the lives of the Bloomsbury crowd which consisted of a loose group of artists, writers and intellectuals, the sister of Virginia Woolf, Vanessa being one of the prominent figures there. I found it to be  sublime and inspirational.  Words are difficult to find to express the beauty of this special place. For further information click on this link. http://www.charleston.org.uk We then walked towards Berwick Church built in the 16th century. Here were further works of arts and murals by The Bloomsbury Group, and were part of the original deco.

The next walk I did after that was a month or so later.  The Ramblers organisation sent me a copy of Walk Britain, which has 50 walking routes with Britain’s Best views. I took the book with me to Seaford and went off on my ownsome and did very well that sunny day in June. I walked the Seven Sisters Cliffs which is described in the book as a leisurely  8 mile walk! Walking slowly to the park is a leisurely walk, the Seven Sisters is somewhat strenuous  Up and down!.Up and down, Up and down!! That is the Seven Sister Cliffs!

The next walk will be the Rochester Dickens walk, another very short walk. After this I’m walking from Rye to Hastings which will be the longest I have done in years

Until next time, watch those feet!

 
BW Julie