Home Is Where the Hiking Is (or Was)

It’s been almost twenty-four hours since I last had anything to eat and I don’t think I managed more than two-hours worth of sleep last night. I left work yesterday feeling ‘a bit ill’ and not-right, before I found myself sat on the toilet and, well, I’ll spare you the details! Needless to say, it’s leave me feeling very weak and ‘hurty’ (like a flu bug) and, as I’m not feeling much better today, it looks like I’ll have to pass on the planned group walk this evening.

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At least now, I have a chance to sit down and write about the walk I went on last Sunday. There aren’t many photos to share but I’ll try to keep you entertained.

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Friends

What a good day I’ve had! 🙂

Until late last night, I was anticipating another ‘lonely’ day of walking around and exploring the local countryside with nothing more than my own company. But, after a late-night Facebook conversation, it became clear that my closest friend was keen to see me and for us to get out and do something together. We each had ideas of our own and would wait until the morning before making any decisions.

I was delighted to receive a text from her before I had a chance send one myself. Working spontaneously like that can actually be a good thing. From my own experiences, I can relate to how planning too much too far ahead can lead to anxious thoughts and feelings leading up to the event. That’s partly why I ‘failed’ to make arrive in time for my group walk yesterday.

Ashton Court Mansion

Today though, we were able to arrange a meeting place and later destination within a short space of time.

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Going East (Slightly)

I may have suffered some anxiety and disappointment issues earlier today when I missed the group walk but, as I said I would, I made it out on my own a little bit later, on another chapter in my adventure across the Mendip Hills.

East Harptree Wood and Smitham Chimney

Today, it was off towards the village of East Harptree for a four-mile trek through the local woodland and combe. You may remember that I went to West Harptree a few weeks ago, which is closer to Chew Valley Lake.

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Walking the (Sky)Line

It was still foggy when I got up this morning but, that was mostly in the outdoors. Inside, my head was still a little down but, with no definite rain clouds in sight or forecast until the late afternoon, I decided to get up and make something of the day by making my long-awaited return to the beautiful city of Bath. Last time I was there was back in April; six-months ago now. I’d arranged to meet a friend from a dating site and, although the day went okay and we got to see a few places around the city, well, the friendship didn’t last and we’ve not been in contact since the end of July.

Today was about walking and site-seeing; following the six-mile trail as outlined by the National Trust. It is a beautiful city and, although I’ve only been there twice now, I do prefer it to Bristol. I’d like to spend more time there, if I do ever end up meeting someone special who is strong enough to leave her past behind and move on…

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Another Bleadon Hill

After my ‘rest day’ yesterday, I was back out walking again this morning. I always try and aim to get going a little earlier each time but, as is usual by now, I didn’t arrive at the car park for this one until 11.25, which gave me five-minutes to change my shoes and set off ‘on time’. I was able to find this space without printing out a driving map and taking that with me. For the last few weeks, I’ve been more concerned with my walking routes. Studying Google Maps for some time really does help and I feel confident enough to trust my memory with the drives there (getting back is always easy). Again, the Street View allows you to see many things up close before you leave, including any notable ‘land marks’ that you can use to identify un-marked turnings and road junctions and, on this occasion, I was able to spot the bridleway I needed to find at the beginning of the walk.

8 Wild Walks Across the Mendip Hills

From there, I was able to use a small map for the rest of the walk, which came as part of a book I bought recently. 8 Wild Walks Across the Mendip Hills was only £5 from a local book shop last week (first time I’d been in there and I feel good having done that) and it provides you with enough detail to find your way around (it’s a lot better than the AA map I struggled with a fortnight ago, anyway…).

Walking route for Bleadon Hill.

Today, I set off to Bleadon Hill near Weston-super-Mare.

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Back in the Woods

On a lighter note, I did eventually make it out of the house today and back up to Leigh Woods, where I was only a few weeks ago. It took me a while to get going but I started with a shower, which did help. I still haven’t yet changed my bed sheets and I still want to trim my hair a bit but, I will do that soon. I couldn’t leave as soon as I wanted to because my mum’s friend had arrived to trim the hedge at the front of the house. There was room for me to escape but, as friendly as he is, I just couldn’t face having to interact with him or anyone else. So, I hid away and waited until he’d finished clearing up and drove off.

Last time I was at these woods, my camera’s battery died after two-hours of wandering. This time, I was prepared! Not only was it (almost) fully charged but, I’d also bought a spare! The 16GB SD card I bought at the same time seems to be lasting well – I’ve used it on three days now and yet, I still have around 1,600 photos left to take!

Clifton Suspension Bridge

One journey I was hoping to make last time was up to the Clifton Suspension Bridge and, as you’ll see from the photos, I made it this time.

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Gorge-ous!

It’s fair to say that I’ve enjoyed another good few hours out of the house today. People weren’t sure what to make of the forecast for the weekend and the next two days are meant to be a total wash out. Thankfully, the sun was out this morning and it hasn’t stopped shining all day. I was a little indecisive about where I was going to go today and a window of opportunity opened to meet up with a close friend last night, before it sadly blew shut again this morning. It’s okay though, we’ll see each other again soon and we’ll keep on sharing in the mean time.

I was contemplating a walk across the Mendip Hills (which I might actually do next week) but, I decided to face a potential fear and visit Cheddar Gorge, instead. You’ve probably heard of it (or, the cheese, at least). However, my biggest fear was not of the heights, sidling along cliff edges or even, having to step out in to the real world; I work with a guy from Cheddar who nobody likes. He can be pretty obnoxious at times and I had this bizarre fear that I might bump in to him. Actually, I think I did see him on the way back to my car but, I can’t be certain and it’s definitely not worth worrying about. 🙂

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