Wednesday, August 08, 2012
Actually, that's an exaggeration, cos I haven't even looked yet so I don't know. It feels that way. This morning I took the train to sarf London and walked along the river Wandle for three miles. Naturally I intended to take photos to show you all and naturally I forgot to put my camera in my bag so you'll just have to imagine it. Here's a leaflet about it that google found for me http://www.merton.gov.uk/leisu
The bit I walk starts near Merton Abbey Mills, which is a group of buildings used by the Arts and Crafts movement in the UK. Think William Morris, William de Morgan etc. It's now a sort of 'alternative' craft market at the weekend. I stopped in the Marks and Spencer nearby to get a bottle of water. Interesting experience. Prices as follows, in a plain bottle without a fancy drinking spout:
half litre bottle (two cups) 65p
two litre bottle (eight cups) 42p
So being a thrifty soul, I bought the cheap large bottle and had to carry it for 3 miles. I did drink some though. The river I was walking by, the Wandle is typical of an English river in a flattish area. It's sluggish and clear and there is dark brown silt on the bottom. Being high summer here, it is surrounded by greenery, very beautiful except for the Nettles, which are stinging nettles and live up to their name. They only got me once today though. You can actually eat them in soup or make tea with them, which just proves there's no accounting for taste.
I hadn't seen any fish and was wondering gloomily about pollution when suddenly a couple of hundred swam into view, mainly tiny ones but some bigger. The water is shaded by overhanging trees and nicely dappled and as you get away from the houses, it is surrounded by watermeadow, an ancient and typically British habitat that is full of wildlife including terrifying things like dragonflies. They are huge, and they chase me. It can't be coincidence. Luckily I only saw one and it was an electric blue damselfly in fact, a beautiful colour and not so scary.
I was very pleased to see that the brambles are starting to ripen and I will be out tomorrow in my local bramble patch picking them. Brambles are called blackberries when sold in supermarkets here. I feel better calling them brambles, myself. They make very good jelly, and they're free, which is something I approve of. With wild ones you have to cook them because of (maggots) but let's not think about that. And anyway, I make jelly, which is strained through muslin. So let's forget the (maggots).
So I meandered along with the river and stopped at the cafe and had cake and tea. All counted, esp the tea which is 0 calories.
And then I got the train back.
This afternoon I'm going to the gym.
Polish my halo, someone . . .
PS: this isn't my usual sort of thing, but. There were homemade posters on every lamppost, all over, about a little girl called Tia Sharpe. Tia is just 12 and lives in the part of London where I was this morning. She disappeared last Friday between her grandma's and meeting some friends. So this is the sixth day. Not good. Please say a prayer for her when you have a moment.