I'm enjoying living in the countryside immensely. Ten minutes in any direction reveals a new find. A hidden pond, a derelict wasp's nest, a tooled-up angry farmer.
This weekend we went back to the Bridestones, a natural rock formation high up on the moors above Todmorden. Up there spring was nowhere to be found. Only a biting wind, frozen snow drifts and views across the Calder valley.
I think sometimes, as humans, you owe it to yourself to get out there and explore. And the only real way to do that is on foot if possible. I'm becoming surprisngly evangelical about this. I did it in London, traipsing through the neighbourhoods of the wealthy and the doomed alike, and exploring the same streets Dickens and a thousand psychogeographers and flaneurs have since documented.
And now I do it here, across fields and woods. When you walk to you have your head up - no book, no headphones. Sometimes no thoughts either, just a blank space and the whistle of the wind or the sound of your own breathing.
Somehow this endless walking seems to tie in with my recent increased hours spent on new fiction writing projects. Or perhaps I just have obsessive tendencies. A bit of both, I think.
(pics lifted off the internet)