How things change, eh? A month ago I’d paid for two further months at the gym to tide me over until I left the country. I’d bought a suitcase and was filling it with items to take off to Crete on the 19th April, three days after signing copies of The Human in Forbidden Planet in London. Then along comes COVID-19 and the shitstorm began. Shortly thereafter my gym closed and my flight was cancelled. I moved the latter to 2nd May but am not getting any hopes up. Now, rather than go to the gym I’m walking, and this post is mostly about including some text with a few photographs.
I did start writing here about the virus and the response to it, but too much has been written already and I’m a tad sick of it. Afterwards, when the dead are counted and the economic cost assessed, perhaps we’ll understand it all better, though not much better. Unfortunately, two arguments will arise in contention with each other. 1. The governments closed things down too much because the death rate didn’t warrant it. 2. If governments had not acted as they did the death rates would have been catastrophic (because my computer model says so).
Bollocks to all that. Let’s go for a ramble. Here’s some pictures from my walk yesterday:
Views across the Essex countryside all around, but for a large part of this walk I’m watching where I’m stepping at the side of the roads. Usually I’m also keeping an eye out for mad white van driver and elbow-breaking wing mirrors, but this time, not so much.
You get the idea. . .
Another one of those places, and there are many of them around me, where you say, ‘Used to be a pub’. The building on the immediate right was The Black Lion while those just beyond it used to be the car park.
Maybe a quarter of the way here and I’m still walking down beside roads, though here at least there are pavements.
At last on the track down to the River Crouch. Here I find dog walkers social distancing by about twenty feet. Perhaps they’re risk averse in Althorne.
Bleak Essex fields again. This is not Basildon Essex but rural Essex not far from the sound of banjos playing.
Passing over the railway line that to the right leads to London and to the left to Southminster. Woodpecker in the trees behind me. I wondered what the bloody noise was till I saw the holes up there in the trunks.
Blackthorn in flower. In some places the blossom lying in cracks in the roads make it look like we’d had a sprinkling of snow.
Down by the River Crouch now. I’ve picked samphire and wild spinach (or rather ‘sea beet’) down here at other times of the year. The sea wall is often decorated with hollowed out shellfish and crabs.
View towards the marina – the direction I’m heading.
The other direction towards Burnham-on-Crouch. Nice cream teas, fish and chips and cockles thataway. I’ve done the walk there a few times. I just hope I don’t get the opportunity to do it this year.
This in the boatyard of the marina. My cynical thought applicable to present times was: yeah, out of the water, up on blocks and behind a mesh fence
A crane, because I like it.
On the way back towards Althorne Station (from where I would have been departing to London in two weeks) and thence back to the roads.
View from the Lower Burnham Road towards the River Crouch.
Water tower converted into a house on that road. Not to my taste but probably a good place to live with a great view from that balcony up there. I wonder what shape the rooms are inside?
Couple of views on the way back.
Rectory Lane. Because the fields are higher on either side and there are no ditches at this point it spends a great deal of time flooded. Knowing that many streams trace the route of footpaths I reckon this will become a stream if our civilisation collapses. Happy thoughts.
American diner just around the corner from where I live. I’ve enjoyed nice breakfast in there. I wonder if it will still be in existence next year?
So there you go. I know that for most people who live in the UK the pictures above are pretty boring standard stuff. But plenty of people visit this blog from elsewhere so there’s something of interest here for some of them.
Have a good day!