Tag Archives: Wednesday Walk-along

A Walk on Wednesday: To see a Giant

The Cerne Giant.

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This rampant fellow strides across the hill beside the ancient village of Cerne Abbas, just a few miles north of Dorchester, Dorset. (just look at that sky! that is how it was here on Sunday – perrrrrrrrrfect)

I have been yearning to go on a proper grown up walk. I spend a lot of time walking with 3 year olds and in places where pushchairs can go, so for the sake of balance, it was time for a real ‘up hill, down dale’ walk that would give me a bit of a cardiovascular work-out – and walking up that hill to the top of the Giant’s Head certainly does that.

But first I just had to find the church garden that Cathy had posted a photo of last week. I have been to Cerne Abbas so many times, but did not know about this wonderful little gem – thank you Cathy!

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What a beautiful place
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With huge scented magnolia flowers in the far corner, smelling deliciously of lemons
a g ahand the myrtle beaming in the sunshine
ai ajThere was a plant list in the little gatehouse, why did I not stop to take note of what type of magnolia it was to be flowering at this time of year – an excuse for another visit soon.

From the garden my friend and I walked up the street past this rather elegant house, cernehouwhich looked across the street at these extraordinarily enormous begonias – what a culture clash!begoniasThen past ancient walls and through the iron gate to cross a graveyard
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to the fields beyondsheep view

the leaves of the beech trees glowing yellow in the early autumn light
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The footpath goes through the woodsDSC_0664and then along below the Giant’s feet, but we climbed to the top, walking alongside the fence and were rewarded with glorious views of the village below.hill2hill1

Not sure why these two pictures are such different colours when they were taken minutes apart – but looking in different directions.

At the top we came across this bird who seemed very used to walkers passing byDSC_0668

I think it could be a Whitethroat, but you might know better.

We walked along the top of the hill searching for the footpath. We were aiming to follow  the Giant’s Circular walk as written about by Rodney Legg in his book Dorset Walks, written in the 1990s.

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I was wondering about how to make this walk an ‘Art Walk’ and my friend pointed out all the shapes and textures in the landscape: the lines of grass in the foreground, the geometry of the fields, the domes of trees and shrubs and the fluff of seed heads before the wind takes them, there are also white dots of sheep on that green hill.

It is obviously a good year for sloes. sloes

Everywhere a beautiful view, both of us were born in Dorset and enjoy our deep connections with the landscape.thru view

The hill is a permanent pasture grazed by sheep which allows for all sorts of flora and fauna. I must look this flower up in my wildflower book.flower

At last we found the path we were looking for and headed down into the valley towards Minterne Parva  ……

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To be continued ……..

I’d love to see where you have been walking, just add a link in the comments. It can be a walk you took years ago or this week, it would be fun to walk along with you.

Wednesday Walk-Along at the Old Mill

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The Old Mill, Netherbury, Dorset.

Joining in with Wordless Wednesday.

And for somewhere completely opposite, join Mary in Kentucky at Walking My Path

I’d love you to leave a link to one of your walks, could be recent or archive, it would be great to be able to walk-along with you.

Wednesday Walk-Along in Netherbury

Here, as promised, a glimpse into the gardens of Netherbury. Such a quaint village, you just want to wrap it up and take it home with you. Quintessential Dorset, with views to the surrounding hills at every turn, and a cream tea at the end of it – what could be more perfect for a summer stroll, starting at the vertiginous steps leading down from the church ….. DSC_0583 and into the villageDSC_0584 with the invitation to enter some truly beautiful gardensDSC_0611 what is this little beauty?DSC_0588 I’d love to knowDSC_0590 gardens basking in the sunDSC_0591 DSC_0594 and here a mint bug, so shiny and jewel-likeDSC_0596 DSC_0601 and a lantern treeDSC_0599 DSC_0599with squidgy lanterns that felt all rubbery in the shrubbery.DSC_0600 … some neat ideas – like this one – sedums covering the log storeDSC_0602 always looking out to gorgeous viewsDSC_0603 or in to gorgeous viewsDSC_0609 and seeing delicate clematis I’ve never seen before, one was called MarjorieDSC_0612 aaah! ……. quiet corners in which to sitDSC_0614 rampant climbers tumbling over walls togetherDSC_0620 DSC_0621 take a sniff …..DSC_0622 ……  a heady mix of scentsDSC_0624 sweeping lawnsDSC_0625 sunny wallsDSC_0627 shady nooksDSC_0635 sunlight through acersDSC_0636 an old farmhouseDSC_0643and then on to the highlight ……. The Old Mill….. ………..    I’m going to save the photos of the Old Mill for a post all of its own – tantalising! yes! that place has lodged in my heart…….

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for now you are in for a treat: go for a wonderfully interesting Walk-Along with RainbowJunkie around Old Sarum.

And an Arty walk along in Harlem Where have you been a-wandering? Please leave a link to your walk, it would be lovely to wander along with you where ever you are.

Update: From the Gardener’s World website- The mint leaf beetle, Chrysolina herbacea is a native, iridescent green beetle that feeds on the leaves of the mint family in the south of the UK. Both the adults and their fat, black larvae feast on the foliage.

Walking on Wednesday at Corfe Castle

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a view from the rampartscc5

cc6 cc7We took Miss E, Master R and Little Miss M to Corfe Castle, and had a wonderful time. The children had a quiz sheet to fill in and then we watched lots of staged battles, after which they were able to try on the armour. The sight of little Miss M (aged 2) wielding the biggest shiniest sword, with a very determined, delighted and serious face was fabulous – girl power!

Where have you been walking? Please do join in with the Wednesday Walk-Along and add a link to one of your walks, it would be fun to wander along with you.

WednesdayWalkAlong in a Walled Garden

In a Walled Garden in Manorowen, West Wales (a walk I did a few weeks ago).

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A wonderfully magical air of neglect mixed with love of place, fantasy and forgotten dreams.

And you can walk along with Crafternoon Treats around Scarborough, and have a Weekend Wander in Australia, and explore with Alisa Burke in Oregon; and Melissa in Ireland

Also joining in with Wordless Wednesday.

Please feel free to put a link to one of your walks so that we can walk along with you.

Wednesday Walk-Along around Bodiam Castle

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A bit more of Bodiam Castle in a peaceful corner of East Sussex. (from August 2014).

Also you can take a dramatic coastal walk-along with Sarah in Cornwall; a glorious visit to a rarely accessible Italian garden with Jules;

And joining in with the wonderful Wordless Wednesday crew, have a wander around this stunning Italian garden; bask in a sunny photo from Julie; enjoy Cathy’s diamonds.

Feel free to add a link to your own wonderful wanderings.

Wednesday Walk Along with Bluebells in the Mist

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And for Gothic effect ….

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Also joining in with the Wordless Wednesday Crew

And you can walk along with Crafternoon Treats around Scarborough, and have a Weekend Wander in Australia, and explore with Alisa Burke in Oregon .

I’d love to know if you prefer to see all the photos listed like this or if you prefer to see them in a slideshow.

Where have you been wandering?

Welsh Wednesday Walk-Along

The drive from St.David’s to Aberaeron is spectacular! On my way I took a little detour to find Mwnt. (this was a few weeks ago) My cousin had recommended this beach (thank you H!) otherwise I would never have ventured the 3 miles off the main road. It was well worth it.

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it does take a bit of finding down narrow high-banked roads2a 2c

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I did not see any dolphins but did see a Red Kite being chased by what looked to me like crows. Blissful to be able to sit, looking out to sea, and crochet, whilst sipping a hot cuppa from the excellent little kiosk, and munching on homemade Welsh cakes. 8

The sand is just asking to be drawn on ….

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…. a cool waterfall for washing the sand from between your toes as you leave the beach8b

And thank you so much to Linda for letting me know about this spectacular Sand Artist – watch this!

Where have you been walking? I’d love to see your part of the world, please leave a link to one of your favourite walks so that we can walk along with you.

Wednesday Walk-Along at Brockhampton

Blossom, blossom, blossom… fluttering, floating, swirling on the breeze  and sprinkling the air with beauty.blossom

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Having driven down and down, deep into a wide valley you come to Brockhampton Manor House, a National Trust property in Herefordshire. To get to the house you walk through a spectacular ancient damson orchard and I managed to catch it in all it’s glory (about 2 weeks ago).

Such a cold and cloudy day, but still immensely peaceful and full of SpringinessDSC_0614DSC_0636

The house is small, but cute and quirky, brimming with history and quaintness.

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The Gatehouse looks like it could have been built by a child, and might topple over any minute.

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It seems quite strange for such a small house to have a moat – grandeur in miniature.gdnmoat

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And then into the orchards with ewes and their lambs, and a bench to sit upon an soak up the atmosphere – oh if only one could bottle that!

DSC_0632I can’t seem to stop thinking about poetry at the moment – not very high brow, but I’ll share with you anyway what popped into my head whilst sitting on that bench wrapped up in a warm coat and doing a spot of crochet:

Lambs bleat
Birds sing
Swallows swoop
Here comes Spring!DSC_0627 (1)

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There is plenty for children to do DSC_0630 (1)and several long, well-marked walks.

And a very nice cafe with seating both outside and inDSC_0634

Happiness is a hot cuppa, time for writing and crochet in a peaceful place and a beautiful view.

And then how about a Walk-Along with Cathy in Scarborough, Kim in the South West of England and then a quick hop to Christina’s beautiful garden in Italy to warm up a bit!

Where have you been walking this week?

A Wednesday Walk-Along with Linda

Please take off your shoes and join us on our Ynylas walk, (just before we created the labyrinth)………..

….. ooooh I am still savouring that magical stroll along the wide expanse of Ynylas Beach…… as we go …. imagine a spring breeze making your hair dance around and feeling fresh on your cheeks …. making them glow…….DSC_0438

……. cool salt water swirling round your ankles ……

linda6………    is there anything better in the world than walking along a beach with a dear friend, on a sunny day ……

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….. looking for shells …….. watching the shifts of light as the clouds scud across the sky

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noticing patterns DSC_0466DSC_0462 DSC_0460 DSC_0458and inspiration for doodles

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with the lull of the sound of the wavesturnng point

……..  and then it is time to turn around

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and return, still gathering shellsDSC_0481

…. and marking a thank you before leaving the beach.

Dust off the sand between your toes, shoes on, deep breath and maybe just a little sigh as we say goodbye to Ynylas (for now anyway)…….

Would you like to see the shells I collected?

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So satisfying to see them all laid out, some gathered for Linda’s Mum who makes the most amazing shell sculptures, some for me to play with in making pictures, patterns and mandalas as I did in January 2014 in Abu Dhabi,  and some as collage material for my grandchildren ………. what would you do?

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I tried to find  out what ‘Ynyslas’ means in translation. Ynys is ‘isle’, but if I put in ‘ynys las’ – I get ‘greenland’ – however ‘las’ does not translate as ‘green’.

Welsh is not an easy language!

And now, after the beach, how about a wander through:

an Italian Garden;

or join Amanda, The Welsh Wanderer on her journey walking the coast paths;

and then a real treat if you like reflections on water – A Canal Walk in Yorkshire

I do hope you enjoyed walking along with us, it’s fun having you along.

Please leave a link to one of your favourite walks, we’d love to join you.

Wednesday Walk-Along in Carmel-by-the-Sea

Let me take you back to November 2008 when I arrived in Carmel-by-the-Sea, in California.

I stayed at The Colonial Terrace, just a short walk from the beach. It was a perfect place to rest and adjust to the time difference before heading for the most blissful 6 weeks of my life at Esalen, Big Sur.
001carmelHaving left a cold dark November England, that first morning sitting on the terrace eating breakfast and looking at the glimpse of the sea was a health giving tonic.

I was escaping Christmas! I can only face a UK Christmas every other year, it is mainly the commercialism I have to escape from. So every other year I go on an adventure and this was my 2008 escape.

I had a couple of days to wander along the beachbeach

discover some quaint caféscafe

and look at some really lovely houses.gate house house1 porch

I did take absolutely masses of photos and was enthralled by Carmel. I’ve deleted many of the photos over the years, but these happy reminders remain.wreath wreath2

Clint Eastwood was once Mayor of Carmel.

It was a beautifully peaceful, unhurried place to be, which set me up perfectly for my 6 week stay at Esalen, doing a Creative Expression course followed by 5 days of Process Arts.

The drive from Carmel was full of twists and turns and I was feeling a bit queasy when I arrived at Esalen, but the scene that met me took my breath away

esalen 023 and a look around the gardens gdn gdnpermahvn

made me feel fine again and right at home.home

this gorgeous wooden cabin was to be my home during my stay

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which I shared with the most wonderful woman – we got on so well and I’m glad to say we remain  friends despite the distance between us.1stnite

the evenings looking out to sea were special,nite

well, there was so much that was special about that trip.

This sign was up in the Art Space

esalen 070If only I could remember that advice!!!

I hope you have enjoyed my walk down memory lane, I’ve really enjoyed sharing these happy memories with you.

And staying in the US:

Beachcombing with Alisa Burke 

And then, closer to home:

A Walk around London

Please leave a link to one of your walks in the comments below, I’d love to walk along with you. Stroll on!

WWAL Tate Modern and the park

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This Wednesday Walk-along will have to be a bit of a quick dash as my days are a bit hectic at the moment. Last weekend I went on a trip to London to see my son and his family, I just had time for a wander along the South Bank to the Tate Modern …DSCF6627

and was excited to see an exhibition with ‘Poetry’ in the title.
DSCF6640 I couldn’t really get the Poetry side of it, but just had to take a picture of a fellow gallery goer with clothes to pick up the colours of the painting DSCF6647

and another chance view of a girl obligingly wearing clothes to match the scene by the riverDSCF6658

I waited a while outside Selfridges to catch a properly attired passer-by to go with this window display, but no one in pastels came along.

Selfridges window displays are like visiting an art gallery in themselves. Then I met my son after work and we travelled back to his home together.

On Saturday it was a walk in the park, to the playground and then feeding the ducksDSC_0235 DSC_0237So lovely to spend time with those delightful little ones – and my son of course!

 

WWAL: Doreen’s Garden and a Pub Lunch

For this week’s Wednesday Walk-Along: A return to Branscombe for a walk with a friend and time to fully appreciate Doreen’s garden. Branscombe is an extremely long village, sprawling along the sunny valley. From the Village Hall we walked up to the hill to the west towards the church. I was delighted to see this village still has a primary school.sch

The one in our village closed about 7 years ago – I miss the sound of the children at playtime.

Next you come to the church, of course I had to see the inside ….church

 

 

 

…… and the needlepoint.

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All the kings and queens of England are commemorated here. I just love the way each church has a design theme carried out by willing crafters. And this church still has the old box pews where the gentry used to sit to keep them safely separated from the hoi polloi. seatsAnd an extraordinary structure for the pulpit, raising the speaker on high.

Then just a little further up the hill you are greeted by the delight that is Doreen’s Garden!DG2with all sorts of quirky items to entice you inDG1 the garden is possibly nearly 2 acres DG1afilled with a bonkers mix of different styles and statuesDG1b DG2a

A complete delight..DG4a1

I didn’t get to meet Doreen, but I could sense her humour and her love for all living creatures, with poignant markers in the garden at random spots …DGparrotthe sculptures have obviously been in situ for some years….. DG4b DG4 DG4aI am always fascinated by the colour and texture of lichen – here an added twist!

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I hope to come back again in late Spring to see how this garden is transformed by colour.

 

The garden is open every day, all that Doreen asks is that you make a donation to the Devon Air Ambulance Service, which of course we did – it would be interesting to know how much she has raised for them altogether.

We had a day of bright sunshine, cold breezes and snow flurries (back at the beginning of March) and headed on up through the village to the pub, as the sky darkened,

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passing ancient cottages along the way and arriving at The Fountain Head just in time to watch the snow flakes fall whilst sitting by a warming fire.pub1And continuing with Big Bros’s cushion cover, whilst waiting for our soup to arrive.

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At this stage, it looks like a scarf, and the length is actually perfect for a scarf –  this is the Cosy Cal pattern that keeps on giving!

A walk discovering new places with a close friend, a quirky garden, sunshine, a pub lunch and time to sit and chat and crochet – all the ingredients for a heavenly day!

 

Here are a couple of other lovely UK walks to walk along with:

Walk along from Thornton Dale to Ellerburn with NanaCathy,

and near Southampton with RainbowJunkie

Walking backwards to Branscombe

……To continue my walk to Branscombe from Beer in Devon – it was such a stunningly fabulous day! B2That first sight of the red cliffs curving away into the distance! Wow and double WOW!!!

The visibility was perfect. There is something so restorative about being able to see so far, so clearly. I feel at once that I become as big as the panorama and at the same time feel like a teeny tiny speck in the vast universe and connected to all there is.

If you are at all bothered by heights skip the next photo

B3Just over the brow of the hill you are treated to an inland view of the villageB5And my goal ahead, the Sea Shanty Beach Cafe for lunch.B6I am so glad I did not know what an incredibly steep decent it is into Branscombe before I set off, or I might not have gone on this walk.                          I have osteo-arthritis in my right knee. I can walk up hill and along the flat for miles, but even with a knee support and a walking stick, as soon as I start going downhill the right knee starts to give up. My remedy: either go down sideways, or backwards or if VERY steep go as far as possible on my bum!B7Much to the amusement of fellow walkers!                                                              (You knew I would have pink boots – didn’t you?)

B8Look there is someone else going down sideways – the steps were much too muddy for any other ‘dodgy knee’ technique.B4

As you can see this is the route for a cross country run! That hill must be a killer! Hope it all went well for them.B10After the long muddy steps there is still a way to go – and this I did mostly backwards. A lot of people look curiously at me or stare straight ahead trying to ignore this odd behaviour, I prefer the merry quip and a bit if banter. It occurred to me that I have never come across anyone else walking backwards downhill – does this mean that people with arthritic knees just don’t go walking the hills and dales.

I also had the Goons singing in my ear:  I’m walking backwards for Christmas

One young person striding past said “there’s a Frank Sinatra song ‘Walking backwards in High Heels isn’t there?” so I tried looking it up and came up with these lyrics, but no mention of Frank.

“The Woman With You”

She hit the door 6:55 sack full of groceries split down the side.
Can goods scattered all the way to the curb.
Look on her face saying don’t say a word.
So, it’s me and her and a can of beans sitting there on the front porch swing.
Western sky all turning red.
Head on my shoulder she sighed and said:

Been gopherin, chauffeuring, company chairman.
Coffee maker, Copy repairman.
Anymore there ain’t nothing I swear man that I don’t do.
Been juggling, struggling, closing big deals.
Dancing backwards in high heels.
Just when it feels like i can’t make it through.
She said it sure is nice to just be the woman with you

 

Once at the bottom there is an information board to read whilst you summon up the energy for the last few steps to sit in a delightful garden at the Sea Shanty Cafe (you can also sit out at the front and look at the sea).

B11 with a cappuccino, to do a spot of crochet, whilst waiting for lunch. This is the start of a cushion for Big Bro, my grandson. He has requested dark colours, at 4 he knows exactly what he wants!B12

A quick visit to the beach, no beachcombing goodies to be found ….B13B14…… then a gentle stroll through the woods to the village …B15… which sprawls along the valley – more on the village another day but……B18

…. I must just tell you about Doreen’s garden – if you are ever in Branscombe you MUST go and see this magical, crazy garden, which is plainly Doreen’s life’s work and you can look around and explore to your heart’s content – all she asks is that you make a donation for Devon’s Air Ambulance service – fabulous!

And then I caught the bus back to Beer – a white-knuckle ride, switchbacking through tiny lanes with brambles scratching the bus from hedges on both sides!

Hope you enjoyed the walk.

 

WEDNESDAY WALK-ALONG: this week you can also go for a walk with Murtagh’s Meadow, in Ireland.

Wednesday Walk-Along Beer to Branscombe 1

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1Set off by walking past the Anchor Inn, near the beach, and up the hill past the allotments. What a place to garden!!! 5Look West, and then look behind you to the East. The panorama is breathtaking.67A first glimpse of the red cliffs of Devon.(more pictures in the slideshow)10Decide whether to walk the undercliff (too boggy at this time of year) or take the high ground to the old Coastguard’s lookout14 with a Buddha now keeping watch from the upper window – and here the Buddha’s view15 bviewand on across the top to Branscombe ……. (to see the continuation of this walk click here)

Melissa and I started a Renga when I was in Devon and although we did not carry it on -( life sometimes takes over – and we do it for fun – no pressure) I wanted to record what we wrote, cos I like it as it is! And it refers to this very walk.

Melissa starts with her Haiku Challenge and we alternate the verses from there, if anyone else would like to pick this up and run with it you are very welcome:

On rare occasions                                                                                                                  I imbibe much and suffer                                                                                           Harsh headaches always

Away on a weekend break                                                                                          White wine for me, no headache

Sulphite free that wine                                                                                                  Must be, grapes sent from heaven                                                                                  To you in Devon

Walking on air along cliffs                                                                                           Clear head and cobalt sea drifts

Fresh air is the best                                                                                                  Remedy for my sore head                                                                                          Sleep? No! Walk instead

(addition in green! Melissa wrote the above next verse …. ah! now to see if the next couplet comes to me)

I love to include walks from other blogs here too, so we can all wander round the world together: this week join a delightful family walk with Alisa Burke, in Oregon, USA I would skip for joy if you put a link to your walk in the ‘Comments’, and if you don’t have blog, send me some pictures by email with a few words about your walk and they will appear in the next Wednesday Walk-Along. 😉

Wednesday Walk-Along

A cliff path walk above Ringstead Bay, towards the coastguard cottages ….

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1view from the National Trust field where one can park

5 10 14the path was so muddy I kept slipping and falling over and had to be content with a zoom shot of the cottages from the camera before turning home. A walk to save for drier weather.

15The views on the way back are stunning ……. (to be continued)

I’d love to join you on one of your walks. If you send me a link to your blog post I can post it here for virtual Walk-Along.                                                                          If you don’t have a blog, go the the Contact page and send me an email with some pictures (as Linda did here), so that we can walk-along with you!