Show me the way to go home

12 October 2017

We’d left to Road that thought it was a trail and were back on a real road again, with houses and even a sign for a railway station off to our left. One of the houses had an interesting gateway, a little like a lych gate. For a second I thought it might be the church where I was planning to stop and have a break. It wasn’t but the gate wasn’t so interesting I was about to take a photo when my phone rang. It was Commando, calling on his lunch break for a chat. If we’d walked a little quicker we could have made a detour and gone to see him. Once he’d gone I took my photograph of the gate. It was worth the wait, especially the sign that said Beware of the Gnomes. That really made me smile.  Continue reading Show me the way to go home

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

Back to the sea, sort of – first published 18 May 2014

After the 10k race at Victoria Country park in May 2014 and my wander around the military cemetery, it was tempting to walk back to the car with Commando and go straight home. It was warm and the sun was beating down on my head. That hadn’t been the plan though so he walked one way and I walked the other. He was headed for the car park while I was on my way to the sea, or what passes for sea around here. Continue reading Back to the sea, sort of – first published 18 May 2014

The Power of the sea – first published 6 March 2014


In early March 2014 the sea had called me and I’d answered with a walk down to the shore. There were signs of Spring everywhere, along with signs of the terrible winter storms. Parts of the path were crumbling and, as I passed West Lodge I wondered what the damage would be along there. What I found makes quite an interesting tale, mostly about the amazing power of the sea. Continue reading The Power of the sea – first published 6 March 2014

The call of the sea – first published 6 March 2014


I’m always thankful that I live near the sea. There’s something about the sound of crashing waves and the taste of salt in the air that can’t be beaten. It may not be a beach of golden sands, with palm trees swaying and the sun beating down but, some days, the shore calls to me and, when it does, it have to listen. In early March 2014, I did just that. Continue reading The call of the sea – first published 6 March 2014

Aiming for Hamble and trying to beat the wind, rain and tide – first published 31 January 2014


The last few of days of January 2014 were a whirl of activity, most of it centred around trying to find a job. There was a meeting at Office Angels which turned out to be far shorter than I’d expected. The person I was supposed to see hadn’t turned up, never a good start, and the one I did see wanted me to completely change my CV. Frantically working away to make the changes, I got so involved I almost made myself late for my afternoon dentist appointment and had to march it out for the three miles or so to get there. Thankfully the old choppers were fine. Pete, my dentist told me, “you really need to eat more toffees and brush your teeth less often to give me something to do.”  Continue reading Aiming for Hamble and trying to beat the wind, rain and tide – first published 31 January 2014

The secret of the curious gateway


5 January 2016

According to the weatherman Tuesday was going to be the best day of the week. In fact it looked like it would be the only dry day. Obviously a walk of some kind was in order and I had a place in mind. For a long time now I’ve been wondering about a curious gateway along Abbey Hill at Netley, not far from the abbey. Countless times I’ve passed it on the way to somewhere else and wondered where the path leads but I’ve never had the time to check it out. Today was the day I did. Continue reading The secret of the curious gateway

If you go down to the woods today


24 March 2015

My Tuesday walk was prompted by a post on the Southampton Heritage Facebook page about a strange brick structure in West Wood. There were lots of theories about what it could be and it looked so interesting I thought I’d try to find it myself and take a look. I do like a good mystery. Also, as last week’s West Wood exploration was cut short by an unaccountable bout of lethargy, it seemed a good plan to go back and finish what I started. Continue reading If you go down to the woods today

sea, ruins and melting snow

Weston Shore
Weston Shore

3 Fenruary 2015

Pretty soon I was crunching through the snow around the corner, where the Seaweed pub used to stand, to the shore. Beside me snow was caught in the seed heads of the swaying grasses and I could see a ragged line of white where the shingle beach should be. Despite the dark clouds everything looked sparkling and bright. The brooding snow cloud on the horizon almost hid the towers and spires of Fawley on the other side of the water but the sun was doing battle with them, trying hard to burn through.  Across the road the little beach shelters looked lonely on the empty foreshore, it seemed as if I was the only person in the world, with the whole beach to myself. Continue reading sea, ruins and melting snow