Pandemic Pondering #564

Back on the road to familiar places. First stopping at Strong Adolpho for a coffee. Pre-pandemic this was a regular drive to a regular destination. Mawgan Porth has always been a favourite beach, gone are the heady days of family meet-ups, things change but the geography and feel of the place remains. The weather is definitely at the scraggier end of Scrag End of summer. In truth we have had warmer Christmas mornings on this beach.

Once again we have the right clothes to make the weather just a minor irritation. Hugo got his dancing paws out.

Lola has a tiny bit of holiday ennui. She is in season and her freedom is slightly curtailed while there are other dogs on the beach. Like an artful teenager she has one eye on holiday romance while conforming to the family traditions of bracing walks in inclement weather.

Once there is no one else around she is free to be off the lead and scampering at our heels only stopping briefly to leave an alluring flavour of herself on unsuspecting cliff edge plants in the hope that some canine lothario can track her down.

Pandemic Pondering #535

Back to the usual morning dog walk. In the hours we have been back from the weekend sojourn to Wimbledon, dog walks have been slow paced affairs. We have only lived in our current location for a couple of months. The dogs obviously dont feel that their cachet of news filled wee stops is quite extensive enough to keep in the canine loop while away for three days. Yesterdays home return walks were very sniffy, news gathering, affairs with many replies needing to be sprinkled en route. This morning there was canine disdain when their usual early morning routine was disrupted by a closed footpath. I managed some lovely photos but they are unmoved by such things .

The footpath will be closed for two weeks. This will upset the dogs but it is also the footpath that leads to our regular ‘ bobbing’ beach , our regular haunt for the whole of the pandemic!

While the dogs are sniffingly detained on information gathering I am sometimes left standing around a bit. This morning I noticed two lifting rings on an old manhole cover.

One of them had been quite crumpled. It is really hard to imagine what could possibly have caused such harm, but I am very glad not to have been standing in the same place when the damage occured.

Pandemic Pondering #533

Some more hot, September days, this weekend spent criss crossing Wimbledon Common. The early morning dog walk also took in a fair bit of the common, inadvertantly, when I took a track to avoid a nasty sounding dog altercation and failed even a tenderfoot forest navigation.

I found more Womble summer camps.

Discarded and empty now all good Wombles are back on the job of caring for the Common.

©womblesofficial.com

I managed to get some perspective on post industrial heritage.

And found a memorial rose to a long dead tennis player.

All before breakfast.

Pandemic Pondering #516

Hot on the heels of yesterdays morning blog is an evening blog of the same day, and two pictures from the exact same position with only a dog walk between them. Between yesterdays blog and this one lies the path of a day taken up by stuff, complicated by maintainance work on a local bridge. A normal 20 minute journey swelled to fill an hour and I missed an appointment. Rebooked for two hours later I filled my time with delivering brochures for an upcoming Open Studios event.

And took a trip to the supermarket. The appointment required me not to drive for two hours after so I was ‘forced’ to enjoy a late lunch in a friends garden and soak up the sun whilst my eyes returned to a normal, not blurry, way of life. Time then to head for home and get all the day jobs done. Before heading out for the evening dog walk which provided the two pictures that top and tail this blog. Since moving, our evening dog walk always takes in the area around the Royal William Yard, especially since the evenings have started to get darker. Royal William Yard is a collection of Military Buildings in Plymouth.

https://www.visitplymouth.co.uk/explore/areas-to-visit/royal-william-yard

Between the two photos we walked up to a meadow and the dogs chased each other inside the old, second world war gun emplacements of Devils Point.

https://www.plymouthherald.co.uk/news/history/world-war-two-defences-you-2750611

I’m sure the longer we live here the more the history will soak into our bones but right now every slab of concrete is a complete mystery to us.

Returning to our original position, night was properly upon us.Time to turn our twelve feet for home.

Pandemic Pondering #496

Back to bobbing in our own bay with some intriguing little sea weeds. At this angle they look a lot like a sorting hat from the Harry Potter books by JK Rowling. At a different angle they looked like a cast of a kiss. Either way quite fascinating.

Back to reality with trips to the tip and supermarket. All improved by an afternoon swim and chatter with the Bobbers, and a good long walk with some friends and the fluffs. Just as the swim was rewarded with seaweed kisses, or sorting hats, the evening walk was embellished by chips.

Our friends that we walked with deserved these chips as they had canoed up the Tamar, Im not entirely sure what our excuse was!

Pandemic Pondering #476

At last we have WiFi. Back in the world of communicating via tech. It’s funny that my morning walk showed me benches and seats that are set up to allow non tech human to human conversation. The one above is set up high on a look out point accessed via one of two ‘secret’ Gardens close to home. The view from here is spectacular.

But two deck chairs set up for side to side nattering has huge potential for a satisfying conversation. The other`secret’ garden has a bench for four people to enjoy a lively chat.

During the various lock downs we have sat at each of these locations to have conversations and coffee. Much as we love a good natter for its own sake the benefit of talking and laughing or consoling with other people has been immense in the last 18 months.

My final great seat of nattering is a beauty.

Large enough to hold two bubbles of people and perfectly positioned outside, but under a stone canopy for inclement weather. This one has been a winter favourite with one negative point. It is made of metal and can be very cold on the bum.

A small celebration of the potential of conversation on the day @theoldmortuary is finally back in the loop.

Pandemic Pondering #457

A balmy day with an awful lot of domestic admin is not the greatest inspiration for a blog but our evening dog walk was as refreshing as a glass of ice cold lemonade.

Another positive of the day was confirmation of my place on the Advanced Blog writing course and bloggers reunion in Spitalfields in October. A good chance to huddle with other writers.

Street/Public Art Spitalfields

Spitalfields was in my heart long before it became trendy, my student days were spent visiting friends in squats or squalid shared houses there. The bones of which are still standing but now they are million pound homes and offices.

The area retains a quirky irreverent attitude even with an influx of money and cleanliness.

Here is a younger Hugo finding his own version of a squat a few years ago.

Enough of Spitalfields and October. A Cornwall evening in June was the true topic of this blog.

At 9 am the dogs and I were in this exact spot but we were chased away by the assiduous attention of Horse Flies. By 9pm we could actually stand still and enjoy the view. We had a good old trudge around the nature reserve with doggy and human friends. A bug posed on Cow Parsley.

And I felt the need to turn a beautiful but non spectacular sundowner into a poster.

Have a great weekend when it arrives.

Pandemic Pondering#434

The lost blog in The Lost Gardens of Heligan. This mornings blog was lost in the herds of tourists that have arrived in Cornwall for their holidays now no-one can travel abroad. Then it was further lost in an uncharged phone.

A trip to the Lost Gardens of Heligan is a regular treat for us and one that normally we dont plan too formally. But in these busy times we had to book and the only time slot available was really early. Not too tricksy I thought I can blog before I go. Unfortunately due to fashion and stupidity I needed to quickly collect some blister plasters before we even set off. I plugged my phone in to charge on the drive down and was surprised to arrive with only 10% battery. Three pictures later that was it.

One dead battery and many photo opportunities missed.

So apologies for the late arrival of this blog some days the moments in life just dont quite stack up for 600 words before 8 am.

Pandemic Pondering #427

And another day of rain! Thankfully I had to go and replace some spotlights at the art exhibition so I could at least see some sunshine in paintings as I worked.

© Sue Richardson Drawn to the Valley

This picture has everything, sunshine, maskless faces, and a crowd. Spotlights fixed, I had hoped to take a walk around the Industrial Heritage, old mine workings, around Gunnislake, but the weather chased me into the car and back home to domestic admin. Finally just before sunset the rain stopped and the sun popped its head out for 30 minutes of golden moments.

The harbours captured the best images of the turbulent clouds.

This was our usual walk around Sutton Harbour, Cattedown and The Barbican, the sun put in only the briefest of appearances. Luckily one of the entries at the art exhibition shows the Plymouth Gin Distillery in a better light than we saw it last night.

We didn’t actually attempt loving our local gin. Its not a good midweek habit on a school night.

Pandemic Pondering #426

This one picture is all that was left of the day once weather and breakfast had taken what it wanted out of our waking hours. The Pandemic, guilty as it is for so many things, did not affect Sunday, or indeed this blog.

The weather was the most damaging. Another day deluged out of existence. This blog should have early morning action pictures of Pilot Gigs and happy rowers rowing on the Tamar. But the wind and rain postponed that. Nothing stopped our first meeting with friends indoors to share breakfast and natter over too much coffee. The rain continued to pour down on their courtyard garden , making everything lush and tropical looking. The trouble is we forgot our manners, we’ve not really used them for more than 15 months. A breakfast gathering suggests that other things might be done with the rest of the day. Not with guests like us! We left the breakfast gathering at 4:30 in the afternoon. We had talked and talked, fueled by good coffee and breakfast, but we had talked the day away, our ribs and faces aching from mirth. At 4:30 the rain still battered the streets but dogs needed walking, any pretence that anything else might be achieved was washed into the gutter with rainfall. A brief dog walk in waterproofs got the essentials done before book reading and cooking filled a couple of hours. Finally at 8:30pm we could find a rain-free period when dogs could be walked and 10,000 steps could be achieved. One day, one photograph, some sort of milestone.