Out Now!

Friday, 1 November 2013

The Walk: a minor celebration

                                                  Setting out - the world before me

I love walking. I could walk all day and have. Consequently my recent little health-scare bugged me no end. On leaving hospital it took about a week just to be able to walk down the road, never mind anything else. But the body is a miracle in progress and stamina develops. Ten days later I was able to walk the one and a half miles to Waitrose with many stops and some strategic panting. The Waitrose free coffee for Waitrose Card holders made it almost worthwhile. I remember I tried a latte for the first time instead of my usual black and haven't looked back. Perhaps the collapsed lung subtly altered my tastebuds - I can live with that.

This week I took my first non-stop (apart from the photo-stops) reasonably brisk walk to Waitrose without losing breath. Not a pant or a gasp. And it was magic. For those who like the English countryside (Monmouthshire slid into Wales by an inadvertant slip of the pen in the early 1970's) I hope the photos show what a privilege it is to be walking these lanes and what I have been recently missing.





    The magical lane. One direction leads into country. The other direction takes you to Monmouth.                                           



  I walked a mile into the country before turning round.


                                       
This is the final stretch of Vauxhall Field that fringes Monmouth.





I stop and look back and around. Our house is a distant spec.Sometimes caravans use these fields. There
are steam fairs, more often cows getting fat.



                                         

                                      
The sun cooperated. Ahead is St Mary's spire. A few minutes later clouds covered the sun.

                                           
I have a river to cross - the Monnow - which gives its name to Monmouth.



                                          
As you cross the iron bridge you can see the old abbatoir. The blood and guts would run into the river.

                                             
You can see the abbatoir more clearly here - ie  between the arches.

     

At at last Monmouth itself. Ahead is the Shire Hall. The camp little man just below the clock is Henry V.
The white building to the right is the King's Head. Perhaps a celebratory drink is called for.


Looking down the main street. Destination near.                                         



                                     
Waitrose is unseen - just to the left. Directly ahead is the C13th Gate House and a little beyond that
the country again.

A quick look back - using St Mary's Spire as a landmark - and two pertinent questions. Walk back or Bus?
Coffee or Beer? Whatever - best of all my lungs are clear and as sound as a bell!
                                        

7 comments:

Maria Zannini said...

Love the pictures. It's nice to see where you live. And I'm glad you're able to get out there and enjoy it again.

What's the car traffic like in your area? Or do most people walk?

R. Mac Wheeler said...

Kudos to you, for being able to get out there again. Love the pictures

Mike Keyton said...

Maria, I know I enjoyed seeing your neck of the woods. I'm glad you liked mine. Ref walking and cars it's hard to be definite. A lot of people do walk. I've noticed when invigilating in the local school there are very few obese people. However because Monmouth is so small, it often seems there are more cars than there should be. I would love the main street to be pedestrianised, but their are difficulties - so they say.

Mike Keyton said...

Thank you - and ref pictures - a compliment from you is appreciated.

DRC said...

Glad to hear you're on the mend. And at least you have beautiful countryside to help get you out and about. I imagine it'd be a bit different if you lived in a city and there's nothing to appreciate on your walks except the sound of flowing traffic...

Beautiful pics. Lovely countryside :)

Mike Keyton said...

Thank you, Dawn. And you're right about the countryside, my daughter fills her lungs with it every time she comes back from London

R. Mac Wheeler said...

You do a good job using light too.