Friday, January 13, 2006

stanmer stroll

At lunchtime, Sue and I took a walk in Stanmer Park. We set off across the football pitches, wellieboots picking up the soft mud, and climbed the hill to the cap of trees. It's a long climb, much like walking up Coldean Lane, which runs along the same hill but further down. There were the usual lunchtime dog walkers, today it was spaniels, long soft ears flapping as they jogged along, sniffing tree trunks and picking up sticks to gnaw.

We walked under the bare trees, along the muddy paths and down the hill again behind the green houses and along beside the badgers, before heading back to work. It was a wonderfully refreshing walk, clean cool air and the joys of squelching mud under foot. We talked of holidays in the sun, hams cooked in Cherry Coke and the haunted underground tunnels in Edinburgh. We cleared our lungs, stretched our legs and felt as if we'd worked off at least some of the inevitable Christmas weight. And I remembered that even though the winter rips the leaves from the trees and drags away the colour from the world, it is still beautiful out there.

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