The lost walks, part one

As I finally cleared away the debris of my old blog I came across two walks from that last October weekend. Walks taken when I was blissfully unaware of what lay ahead. There were no words, I never got as far as writing about them, just photographs and hazy memories. My hand was paused over the delete button but, the more I looked at those photographs, the more I remembered of those lost walks. It seemed a terrible shame for them to stay lost so I am going to do my best to recreate them now. I can’t vouch for the accuracy of what follows, it was almost three years ago after all and sometimes I struggle to remember what happened last week. Still, with a little poetic licence, here goes. This is the first of the lost walks… Continue reading The lost walks, part one

Elegy to a fallen tree

27 May 2017

Facebook was the instigator of my next short walk with Commando. For as long as I can remember there’s been a dead tree standing at the end of the shore near Abbey Hill. It must surely have been a live tree during my lifetime but I only remember it as a bleached driftwood skeleton. Perhaps it was too mundane to notice when it was alive? Whenever I walk along the shore here I stop for a moment to sit on the bench beside the dead tree, have a drink and enjoy the view across Southampton water. I always knew it would fall some day. A photograph on Facebook told me that day had come. Continue reading Elegy to a fallen tree

Porteau Cove

6 May 2017

Today we were very excited to be going up into the mountains we’d been staring at since we arrived in Vancouver, courtesy of our wonderful tour guides, Jen and Kevin. The plan was to head towards Whistler on Highway 99, otherwise known as the Sea to Sky Highway, for obvious reasons. The highway crosses the causeway that cut the Lost Lagoon off from Vancouver Harbour and runs all the way to the United States border. It is two hundred and fifty four miles long and was listed in the Guardian newspaper as the fifth best road trip in the world. We would, of course, only be exploring a small part of it.  Continue reading Porteau Cove

Collecting the marathon pack

5 May 2017

All our miles of walking yesterday didn’t end with the Lost Lagoon. In the evening Jen wanted to take us out for a bite to eat at one of her favourite restaurants. We went in her car but, on the way, we stopped off at one of her favourite beaches, Spanish Banks, named in commemoration of the June 1792 meeting of the English under George Vancouver and the Spanish under Galiano and Valdés. This was the shoreline we’d been looking out at from English Beach earlier in the day.  Continue reading Collecting the marathon pack

A boat trip and a stroll on the beach

4 May 2017

Today was supposed to be the warmest, sunniest day of our stay in Vancouver, not that I always believe the weather forecast you understand. There was sun outside our hotel window when we got up this morning though and, when we walked down West Broadway in search of breakfast, it was warm even though it was still before eight. Over coffee, croissants and parfaits we both agreed it was the perfect day for a walk on the beach.

Continue reading A boat trip and a stroll on the beach

Woods, hovercraft, ice cream cones and gateposts

5 April 2017

As our little jaunt to Eling had been a success as far as my poor old knee was concerned I thought I’d try a longer walk today.  The sun was shining and the sky was blue, more or less, so it seemed like the perfect day for a walk down to the shore. The breeze from the sea would take the edge off if it got too hot and there are plenty of places to sit if need be.  Continue reading Woods, hovercraft, ice cream cones and gateposts

A cool breeze on the shore – first published 22 July 2014

As soon as I left the shade of the woods and stepped out into the sun on the shore I could feel the heat. The sun seemed to be searing my skin even though I’d slathered on the cream before I left home. There is no shade along the promenade unless you duck into one of the little beach shelters but I couldn’t just stay sat in one of them until nightfall so I set off along the shore, thankful that there was at least a cooling breeze blowing up from the water. Continue reading A cool breeze on the shore – first published 22 July 2014

D- Day and memories of Normandy – first published 6 June 2014

Walking to work on the  morning of the 70th anniversary of D-Day I saw poppies blooming on the demolished TV studio site. They must have opened in the previous day or so and it seemed quite fitting to see their bright heads swaying in the breeze. Poppies for remembrance. It was 6 June 2014. D Day, more properly called Operation Overlord or the Normandy landings, took place on 6 June 1944. The largest seaborne invasion in history is well documented but, for me, all the talk of Normandy beaches had me hankering to go back to one of my favourite places, L’Anse Du Brick just outside Cherbourg. Continue reading D- Day and memories of Normandy – first published 6 June 2014

Race two, The Gosport 5k – first published 1 june 2014

June 2014, Commando had finished the Gosport Golden mile and we were sitting on the shingle at Stokes Bay relaxing. It was a warm day and even a mile, when run at top speed, is a huge effort. Of course this wasn’t the end of the running for the morning, there was still a 5K race to be run… Continue reading Race two, The Gosport 5k – first published 1 june 2014

Stokes Bay, yellow submarines and a golden mile – first published 1 june 2014

The first Sunday of June 2014 and another early start in my capacity as blister technician and chief bag carrier. Commando was running the Gosport Golden Mile and 5k again. It’s a bit of an odd race, a mile sprint followed immediately by a second 5k race run on the same course along the shore at Stokes Bay. It’s a bit of an odd place too, as I was to find out. Continue reading Stokes Bay, yellow submarines and a golden mile – first published 1 june 2014