Sunday 20 December

There is only one antidote to Tier4/lockdown and that is to get out in the open air. To that end I went walking in Kent (Tier 4 like me), starting from Cowden. A very pretty village with some lovely houses nearby. Just a private dwelling as far as I could see. Rather desirable.

The weather was amazing, mostly sunny and not cold. The big problem was mud. It has rained a great deal recently, and we were walking by Kent Water, which is a small river separating Kent and Sussex, so I was a shade covered as perhaps you can see.

Maybe you can also see that I am entering into the Christmas spirit with my ho ho ho hat. There were quite a few people out walking today, with dogs and children. One family had brought a chainsaw to chop up a tree for their wood burner. Everyone was very jolly: very refreshing in comparison to the prevailing gloom and doom.

This is a lovely farmhouse dating from 1622.

We walked almost 7 miles, but I feel it was 6 miles flat, and a mile up and down in mud. To say it was squelchy would be putting it mildly! We have noted in the walk book, better to do this in the summer when dry.

A very interesting event today: a phone call from a teaching colleague from 40 years back. She was the German language assistant when I was teaching German at Croydon High School. She took a chance that I had the same phone number, and goodness me, she is still living at the same address in Sanderstead. She just felt like ringing to see how things were. I was so touched, a true blast from the past. After this pandemic has past, I will go and visit her. Just amazing, in half an hour’s conversation the years rolled back.

So the last Sunday in Advent and I lit four candles (Fork handles??!! Old joke, for my younger readers) I had hoped to upload a photo but the internet is being quirky, so tomorrow, with perhaps another carol.

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