Advantages Pure unadulterated pleasure
Disadvantages Not a single one
Let me confess up front. This did not, strictly speaking, make me happy. I wasn't unhappy to begin with. What I was afterwards is….well, does 'suffused with joy' sound too pretentious?…."glad to be alive" too trite?… "pleased to me" too self-satisfied?They all apply, but let's just settle for 'happier'.
What it was, was a lunch-break. An ordinary everyday lunch-break. All employer-initiatives notwithstanding, I am still one of the miscreants who cannot be relied upon to take a break in the middle of the day. My problem is getting started again afterwards…but you don't need to know this. One day this week I was sent on a mission. A Guitar Player had to be found.Would that it was indeed that exciting. In fact, a "Guitar Player" had to be found. The magazine of that ilk. However, I digress. I was merely despatched to pick up said magazine for reasons withheld to protect the innocent.
~ ~ ~Mission Accomplished. & I've been out of the office for oh, a good five minutes, and the sun is shining. I am not going back. Not yet awhile.
Sometimes I realise just how lucky I am. For those who don't know I live and work in Norwich. My office is very close to the Wensum, which means it's on the edge of the old mediaeval city, which makes a lunchtime stroll a wonderful prospect. I have several favourite routes. This is one of them…on a perfect day.-------------------------------------------------------------------
Foundry Bridge, dating allegedly to 1888 (although sources differ) is a solid iron rail-age bridge. Unpretty. Crossing the river by road, at the main entrance to the rail station, it fits. From my office this is where I cross the river to walk on such a sunny lunchtime as today provided. Cutting through the Compleat Angler's terrace as the footpath encourages one to do (from dawn ~ or whenever the keyholder awakes ~ until dusk), pass among the umbrella'd tables, & down the steps to the Riverside Walk. The path is shaded by weeping willows, which obscure the view of the river, provide shade for sitting under, help absorb the noise from Riverside Road and the Yacht station.The route is simple enough. Along the Riverside Walk (entered as above), at Pulls Ferry turn left & follow the road through the Cathedral Close, do not exit by the Ethelbert Gate, but cross the green, past Nelson's memorial, and out via the Erpingham Gate. Brave the roundabout to pass the Maid's Head keeping that wonderful old coaching inn on your right to regain the river at Fye Bridge. Onto the Quayside, which will lead you back onto the Riverside Walk which then leads back to the start. More or less. As a circuit it is, at a guess a little under or a little over a mile. (There are options, short-cuts & extensions.) Flat, paved (or gravelled) walking. Fully wheelchair accessible.
So what's so special?The weather helps. September sunshine is high enough to be out of your eyes at noon, yet low enough to cast interesting light-shade. September sun is strong and warm on your skin, yet the ambient temperature is comfortably cool.
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