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Archive for the ‘walk 1000 miles 2020’ Category

As we enter the 2nd week of lockdown it seems that finally the message is getting through to the last of the laggards. People are staying home πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘

Thankfully I love reading and although I was only expecting to be here for 2 weeks, I brought 3 new books with me. I can’t tell you how often in the past I’ve worked in homes bereft of books!! How do people not have books to read??

As it turns out, I’m going to be here for 5 weeks!!! And bonus…unusually for me there are hundreds of books in this house, and most are by authors that I enjoy…so I have a huge selection and choice to keep me going.

I finished the 1st book a couple of days ago and started reading another of my favourite authors…Lee Child. The Midnight Line features Jack Reacher and as with others in the series it doesn’t disappoint. I read until 11.30pm last night and until I couldn’t see anymore πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ it’s a page turner.

I had the joy of a facetime call with my grandson this morning πŸ’™πŸ‘ΆπŸ»πŸ’™ He’s ever so cute and developing so quickly. Apparently he’s started calling me nan nan πŸ₯°πŸ₯°…still finding it difficult to say Granny πŸ‘΅πŸ» Its an absolute joy to watch his development and I’m in awe of how much he has grown and changed in the last 14.5 months. From a tiny, helpless baby dependent on us for his every need, to an adorable toddler with a very determined mind of his own….and if he’s deterred…he has a bit of a meltdown…a real drama llama πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜ It’s so cute.

I had a fabulous walk today. I retraced my steps from yesterday and went a wee bit further. The weather was perfect for walking. What a beautiful area of the country….although my time is limited, the Quantocks are right on my doorstep and I am so lucky. I only passed about 8 people today, we all waved, said hello and asked if we’re doing good…all in very good spirits. The path I followed runs right next to a bubbling stream and at one stage I was inspected by a very energetic little dog who had no clue about social distancing πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Countrywide the news is not good. This horrible thing is spreading so fast now and as fast as its spreading so our government is lagging behind. You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all the people all the time. If nothing else, being in lockdown gives us a better chance to scrutinise what our government is doing and they’re not doing too fantastically. The medical profession are begging for PPE and other supplies, and the current spokesman stands there and talks πŸ‚πŸ’©. The current crisis is fully in their hands.

So here we are, at the end of another day and I am thinking more about how much I have to be grateful for….others feel the same way too

Take care folks, stay safe

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Okay so today has been both bad and good. My client has been in a bloody strop the whole day and made life absolutely miserable. Urgh. πŸ™„πŸ™„πŸ™„

But it was a beautiful day so I went out for my daily shop and topped up a few items. Saw a few people about – we all observed social distancing but managed to have a brief chat anyway.
As usual I listened to the news, but it’s all so depressing and repetitive that eventually I switched the TV off and spent some time between duties to cut snippets of interest out the newspapers.
I’ve started a time capsule for my grandson; a record of interesting things: big and small that is happening around the world. I plan do do a capsule for each year of his life till he’s 10 years old…or more. Then one day I’ll give him the box/boxes and he can amuse himself looking back at history that happened during his life.

Jamie’s time capsule

My break couldn’t come soon enough today and at exactly 2pm I stepped out the door and into the sunshine. A few people strolled by and again we were all very British and very correct about keeping our distance. It is rather nice actually, people behave differently during a crisis and whereas they might normally not give you the time of day, now we all say hello, comment on the weather (wouldn’t be in Britain if we didn’t) and wish each other a lovely day and stay safe. It’s all rather cosy tinged with a dose of fear.
I walked to the top of the hill and onto the castle where I saw that the baaaaabarians had breached the castle walls…

Baaaabarians have breached the castle walls
Baaaaabarians everywhere

My plan was to settle into the nook I’d seen a couple of days ago and just soak up the sun, the peace and the birdsong…
Which I duly did. Not a soul bothered me.

My view

My daughter called and we facetimed via WhatsApp ….it was lovely to hear her voice and see her face and my grandson is just adorable. So cute and so funny.
He races back and forth, grins at me and then dashes off again. What an absolute joy that child is.

The Blur in action πŸ₯°πŸ₯°πŸ₯°πŸ‘ΆπŸ»πŸ’™


After our call I lay in the sun looked at the sky and watched the clouds go by and snoozed till it was time to get back to work.

Watching clouds and contemplating life

On the way down I stopped to collect tufts of wool scattered around and leaning down to pick up one such tuft I very sensibly put my hand right on top of some stinging nettles. That was 6 hours ago and its still stinging. Fortunately I had a tube of aloe vera in my pocket so rubbed some onto the area. It would have been much worse if I hadn’t. The reason I collected the wool is so that my grandson can use real wool to make a craft sheep….if he ever has to make one…

Tufts of wool

Back at the house, time dragged till dinner time and of course I watched the chancellor’s speech. Krist, hasn’t he learned how to be a politician pretty damn quick!!! Incredible. He’s slotted into the role as if he’d been doing this for years. Do they have a course we don’t know about? ‘How to be slick in 10 easy steps ‘.
Mind you has he ever been dumped in the deep end….I wonder what Sadiq Khan thinks of this…lucky escape or lost opportunity to be a hero??
To be honest, I know this is a terrible time and I worry about my family, but truthfully, I’m exhausted with hearing about this damn virus. The news is like Brexit on steroids.

My stress levels increased exponentially at about 6.30pm when I lost network. I couldn’t send or receive messages and I nearly lost it. My phone is my lifeline when I’m working and I cannot bear to be without reception. Especially at a time like this. It righted itself about an hour later, but my life expectancy has shortened.πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ‘΅πŸ»

The 2nd bright spot of the day came at 8pm…ohhh my gosh. Thats one thing I love so much about this country…when it really counts, people come together.
I stepped out the door into the street half expecting to be standing on my own clapping for the NHS and our wonderful NHS staff, but no….the street was lined with residents and we clapped and cheered loud and strong for our carers. As soon as the clapping started I started crying and couldn’t stop for well over an hour. So amazing to see people out and participating.
And now the day is drawing to a close, I’m in bed and just about to put the light out.

I only managed a collective 1mile today but for sure climbing that hill to the castle must be equal to at least another 2 miles….its that steep; a good cardiovascular workout πŸ˜‰ my excuse anyway.
3 days done 18 to go. Let’s hope this initiative works and we see a drop in new cases.
Goodnight all. Stay safe and wish you all well.

High enough!! πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“β€

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Typical innit

At a time when we could all be out and about enjoying the glorious weather, we’re on lockdown πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺβŒπŸšΆπŸ»β€β™€οΈ

I can hear the birds πŸ˜ƒπŸ•ŠπŸ•ŠπŸ¦

For me, in my job, its business as usual. This is my life…confined to the house for 22 hours a day, 2-4 weeks at a time, with a few outing exceptions like hospital visits or the doctor or a bit of shopping. I don’t mind so much in winter when its cold and rainy, but it’s a mental (and emotional) challenge in spring, summer and autumn. 🌸🌼🍁

But, I am making the most of my break and getting out while the going is good and making the most of my allowable time off and out ….adhering to work and government guidelines. Thankfully this position is not like many others I’ve had in the past where I’m not allowed to leave the house at all for 2 weeks at a time due to the nature of the client’s condition and requirements.

Make the most of your time out allowance and enjoy the fabulous weather….the air is clearer, I can hear the birds, there’s less pollution, I can see the stars at night, and nature is drawing breath….

Clear skies 🌝🌝

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Last night, sitting in the tiny little room I currently call ‘home’ (no, not really a home; I hate this room but it has a bed and electricity) getting more and more claustrophobic, so took myself out for a sunset walk to the harbour.

Ramsgate Royal Harbour

Its really weird walking through the deserted streets, most of the shops and stores are shuttered. The wind blowing a gale and rubbish swirled around like drunken dervishes.

Passing other walkers, they hurriedly lift their scarves to their eyes and scurry by…I guess it’s a bit like it was at the height of WW2. Otherworldly and covert….who’s the enemy? Them, me or Covid-19!!

The view of Ramsgate from the harbour arm is always lovely but I didn’t tarry since I was getting blown off my feet. I think I walked back quicker with the wind at my back pushing me along.

Ramsgate from the end or the harbour arm
Looking out to sea….so windy I could barely stand up

On my way I stopped off at Peter’s Fish Shop and bought a box of hot chips and fish gougons, then into ASDA for tartare sauce and a bottle of Gallo Rose. Again, it’s totally weird to see the empty shelves…something we were expecting with Brexit on the horizon, but Covid-19 has knocked that out the water.

Fish gougons and chips, washed down with a good rose and the sultry tones of Kenny Rogers

Back in the room I put on some Kenny Rogers (may he rest in peace) and had a party for one….

Overall I got in just over 3.6kms (slightly over 2 miles), and although I’m not doing as much boots-on walking as 2017 and 2018, the miles are slowly adding up.

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And so it came to pass, the time has come to part ways πŸ˜₯πŸ˜₯πŸ˜₯ unbelievably I left my trusty companions behind on the Isle of Wight….seriously unbelievable. I walked past them at least 20 times since yesterday’s walk and again on my way out the door today at the start of my journey home. As I sat down on the ferry I suddenly realised I’d forgotten to pack them. Sigh. πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ my daughter always tells me I’m unobservant…understatement. what??!!

We’ve travelled well over 3000 miles together in the last 4 years and I feel quite bereft that our parting has come about so abruptly. However, that said, they were wearing out (much like me) and I had planned to buy a new pair next month before completing The Pilgrim’s Way. Perhaps they knew that and decided to hide in the corner and sulk πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

So goodbye my trusted friends, we’ve known each other through thick and thin, over hills (too many) and many a dale (mostly at the bottom of the next hill)….you’ve provided support through some tough times, helped me balance across rivers and streams, kept me from falling flat on my face when exhausted, and been there with me every step of the way. We were that close I even named them; Gemini, the twins.

Gemini – My walking poles

Hmmmm. Actually,Β now that I’ve just written their obituary….I miss them already and I’ve changed my mind….I had said to the family to drop them off at a charity shopΒ but suddenly that feels rather churlish, so change of plan…I’ll ask them to post them to me. πŸ€”πŸ€”πŸ™„ You can’t just discard old friends in such a cold-hearted way…..

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I’m just coming to the end of my 2nd stay on the Isle of Wight, and I can confirm that the north west of the island is not as dramatic or pretty as the north east side. Okay so it has Cowes, which as a town is quite pretty, but the coastal walk is a bit boring between West Cowes and Gurnard, which is where I am located.

Cowes

Some of the houses in Cowes The weather has been wet wet wet and I haven’t managed very many walks, as well as which, with age, I seem to be less enthusiastic about walking in the rain than I used to be πŸ€”πŸ€”πŸ™„πŸ™„

Besides West Cowes, there really is bugger all to see except the sea, and I saw a lot of that, along with dozens of craft, of all shapes and sizes. The Solent is a very stretch busy of waterway and you can see boats from small rowing boats up to humongous tankers heading for Southampton.

Dramatic clouds. I got back to the house just before the rain came down
Wild seas
A walk on the beach

Across the water are the chimneys of what looks like a refinery….really unattractive….whereas from the Ryde side πŸ˜‰ you can at least see the Spinnaker in Portsmouth.

Refinery across The Solent
Red Jet ferry

So yeah, uggy weather aside, its been a tough assignment that I have not enjoyed one little bit and not much walking to compensate. On my first day on the island I walked all the way into West Cowes, and on other days I walked to the bouy on Egyptian Esplanade However, I did get in a lot of sleep and read about 4 books….all by Mary Wesley; light, easy reading. Mind you I’m chomping at the bit for a good nail-biting thriller. Next week maybe while on holiday in Sidmouth….or perhaps not since we have about 4 road trips planned.

Egypt Point
Gurnard Lock

One really interesting thing I did find is this house….imagine if she’d said no!! Or they hadn’t met at all.

Rosetta Cottage

Awesome history..imagine if they hadn’t met!!
Sunset.

I managed to get out for a quick walk this evening at sunset….hoorah.

Now that the coronavirus has reached the Isle of Wight, I’m grateful to be leaving tomorrow before the authorities shut down anything except essential travel. I could not imagine anything worse than being confined to the island.

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Had a wonderful day in Canterbury today with the boo πŸ’™πŸ‘ΆπŸ»πŸ₯° travelled to Canterbury by train with Mummy who had a dentist appointment.

Granny and Jamie's adventures

Mummy and Jamie reading the newspaper

Then Jamie and I set off on an adventure… first walking through the ancient Pilgrim’s West Gate,

Granny and Jamie's adventures

Jamie at the West Gate, Canterbury

stopped for a quick hello to Geoffrey Chaucer,

Granny and Jamie's adventures

Geoffrey Chaucer

then to the cathedral to see the Christmas tree and nativity scene.

Granny and Jamie's adventures

The Nativity scene at Canterbury Cathedral

Granny and Jamie's adventures

Jamie loved the Christmas tree

We stopped to say hello to the horse on the way out.

Granny and Jamie's adventures

The wooden horse

And then we strolled along the Roman city walls

Granny and Jamie's adventures

The Roman City Walls

before joining Mummy for tea and pancakes. Afterwards we walked back to the cathedral gate for a quick photo

Granny and Jamie's adventures

Canterbury Cathedral

then onto the train and home.

Granny and Jamie's adventures

On the train

Granny and Jamie's adventures

Fast asleep

I got in a good 5kms walking today…added to my 1000 miles target for 2020.

We left Mummy in Canterbury coz I gifted her 3 days while I babysit Jamie, and treated her to a 2 night stay at The Falstaff Hotel so she can have a rest, unwind and do some business planning for 2020. Looking forward to seeing @lemonfeatherphotography and @businessstoriesphotography go from strength to strength this year.

Once we got home, I had a cup of tea, Jamie had a snooze

Granny and Jamie's adventures

Asleep in his cot

and then we played all afternoon till Daddy got home.

Granny and Jamie's adventures

Its so much fun unpacking the socks

Then it was bathtime

Granny and Jamie's adventures

Bathtime

and after a lot of milk, Jamie finally settled for the night.

In all a wonderful day. Rerun tomorrow without the trip to Canterbury. He really is the best company. We had so much fun. I got down on the floor with him to play and he got so excited he bit my eye πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ€ͺπŸ€ͺ crazy kid.

Its really wonderful to see him looking so well again and especially as he seems to be back to full strength with his feeding…hoorah.

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I decided to follow the #walk1000miles challenge again this year, particularly because I didn’t do much walking last year and because I really want to complete the Pilgrim’s Way.

With the weather what it is, it was very tempting to just snuggle under the covers and sleep during my break again, especially coz I am still so tired, but I resisted the temptation and set off yesterday for my 1st walk of 2020. I didn’t go far mind and only did 2.0375 miles….. so only 997.9625 to go πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚….and then I went back to the house and had a 45 minute snooze.

I was reminded once again that East Peckham has absolutely nothing to distinguish it (that I could see), besides being a Domesday Book village, and my walk did nothing to change my opinion. Although to be fair, there is a Hop House I could see, a few older cottages and the church, so I guess that’s something. But I do wonder why people actually choose to live in some of these places. Besides that its quiet, there is just nothing, and it’s miles from anywhere …..just why?

Something to ponder, but not to know.

I’m delighted that my daughter has decided to do some more walking this year as well and she’s joined the Facebook page. She also wants to focus more on her photography business this year, it will be an opportunity for her to get going again.

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