If there’s anything we do on a very regular basis, it’s walking. We walk in good weather and bad. We walk for exercise, we walk for transportation, we walk to explore new places, we walk and we walk and we walk.
At home, in Canada, we have often been some of the very few people out walking (people will stop to offer us a ride, but we’re just out for a walk with no destination in mind). In the winter, we would bundle up so that only our eyes were showing and we would walk (often in the dark). In the rain, Karen (from BC) would assure me that I (from the prairies) wouldn’t melt, and we’d walk. On our travels, we see hidden alleys, strike up conversations with strangers, discover new places, and wear off calories from too many local treats. We usually walk a couple times each day. If there’s a dog around, we’ll walk the dog. I would say that walking is one of the things that brings routine to our lives no matter where we are.
A few days ago, the sun came out. I mean THE. SUN. CAME. OUT. In the UK, we get bits of sun at times. Sometimes we get whole hours of partially sunny skies with only a few clouds. On the 27th of December, the sun came out in all it’s glory.
Early in the morning, as soon as winter’s darkness receded, I could see it was going to be a magnificent day. We don’t see this kind of blue on a regular basis. We went out for one of our walks and we ran into half of the village, I’m sure of it!
When we were in early discussions about house sitting here, this was one of the big draws. We have many kilometers of seaside, promenade and seawall walks.
Check out that sky!
We could have been on the Gimli Seawall in Manitoba. It was a nice, sunny day and the fishing rods were out. When I asked what people were catching, I got an entertaining mix of responses. I was told that it is possible to catch Whiting in this part of the Morcambe Bay, but not likely at this time of year. More sincere answers ranged from, “Not a Hell of a lot.” to “A bit of peace and quiet. We’ve had a house full of family for days, and this is our chance to get out.” These gents were not to be outdone by, “We’re all just getting away from the missus, to be honest.” Ah, the holidays. Celebrating family togetherness the world over.
I’ve been told that, not unlike at home, it is a tradition for families to go out for walks on Boxing Day. I imagine people needing to walk off the turkey and get a little space from their beloved family members. In Heysham and area, December 26 brought miserable cloudy, rainy, windy weather and people were not going out for their walks. December 27th, on the other hand – look out! The crowds! Dog walkers and dedicated walkers and runners beware: the holiday walkers are out. Grandparents were pushing grandchildren in strollers, whole families were out regardless of dog ownership, and… teenagers were walking with their parents! It was a Christmas miracle (OK, some of the teenagers were without their parents, and with their joints, so not a miracle per se, but they were enjoying the day).
We walked until after dark and wandered home exhausted. We didn’t see any museums. We didn’t eat at any fancy restaurants. We saw a Hell of a lot, we enjoyed where we are living, and we walked.