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Jocelyn's Ancient Tree Journey 2016

First Days in England

USA | Friday, 9 September 2016 | Views [187]

The Cotswolds – Getting to England for this six week trip combined a year of planning, organizing and research. Until the last week countdown it felt like an exercise in just that - planning. But as the last week approached with a gazillion lose ends to tie up the journey quit feeling like a dream only. Finally the day before the flight my friends Pat & Melinda whisked me off to their house in Half Moon Bay with a box of unsorted, undecided items, and little technology issues unresolved. However, by the next day things were crammed into my suitcase and I caught the overnight flight to London. The plane departed at sunset and I awoke in the morning watching a sunrise. The flight landed in Heathrow, then a bus to Reading and a train to Honeybourne followed by a taxi to Chipping Camden. Suddenly I was in another world where remnants of centuries past were preserved not destroyed. Footpaths across property lines crisscrossing the countryside. What fascinates me? People walking everywhere all ages regardless of the weather. The intersection of urban and rural life with wisps of wilderness or at least the memory of it. That quintessential pastoral quality to the hilt. Villages with local stone walls and roofs covered with enough varieties of lichen and moss to write a book. Old and veteran / ancient trees vibrant yet hollow, coppiced and healthy defying all the rules of arbor science. Silly topiary crafted from old hedgerows, kissing gates and stiles, step overs and footbridges, place names like Stow-in-the Wold and Tadpole Bridge all evoking smiles and curiosity as I begin my adventures.

Tags: paths, travel, trees, walking


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