Saturday, 21 August 2010

wild, wild horses

I trudged wearily late yesterday afternoon on the Sandlings Walk becoming increasingly frustrated by many of the nightjar signs being somewhat elusive.  Possibly, due to me pencilling the route on my map some six years ago, I may have missed the way some things change in the world of ordnance surveying.  Perhaps as my map is that old, some woodland paths have changed - not the trail but the private woods.  Anyway, I did manage to lose my way a few times - I maintain that several of the waymarked signs have disappeared. In fact, in places some of the signposts themselves were rotten and not being kept in a decent state of repair - that could be very dangerous in the Peaks or wilds of Yorkshire, for example.

Anyway, I managed to finish the walk but my poor aging body thinks that I did far more than fifteen miles! I was pleasantly surprised by seeing an adder, two red deer circling me (big buggers, aren't they?) and basically walking on possibly the hottest day of August in Suffolk.  What I didn't expect was to walk into a herd (?) of wild horses - Polish konic horses I believe.  These were okay about me walking past them - I had my trusty walking pole in case - I'm not good with large animals, and these are quite large.  One thing I do know about horses is that they kick and if that happened, it would hurt.  I gingerly managed to pass them only to come upon a few more a couple of hundred yards up the track.

Another unusual thing was to come across the ruins of a 13th Century Monastery in the middle of, well, nowhere.

There is a small community - larger than a hamlet around it called Greyfriars with houses called White Friars, East Friars et al, but it was a surprise to stumble on to a place that I had no idea existed.

The other interesting (to me) phenomena was the plethora of huge fungi out there in the Suffolk wildlands.

The light was unusual here.  I'm no expert but the taller ones to the left look like Stinkhorns to me but probably aren't.

By the time I got to Southwold, I was absolutely shot.  By Southwold docks I sat down and as I drew a few breaths, took a glug of water and rubbed my aching back, I thought I recognised a person walking past.  It was the partner of a friend of mine and they and their twin sons were busy about a hundred yards from me fishing for crabs.  I believe Southwold is the best place to catch crabs.  Still, moving on . . . so the end to my journey meant a drink in the Red Lion just near Gunhill with some old friends whilst Mrs Dave turned up too to take me home.  All-in-all, a successful day.

At least I can stop saying that I've nearly walked the Sandlings Walk, now I can actually say that I've walked it.

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