Monday, February 6, 2017

Coastal Walk - 13 Miles

6th Feb 2017

Coastal Walk from Herne Bay to Margate - 13 miles.

We sat on a stone seat just before Birchington, about five miles into our walk, to have a coffee.  I was not sure that I could carry on and was working out in my mind how far we were from the nearest train station.
My feet were sore and I was convinced that if I went much further I'd get blisters.

However after a warm drink and a rest I was revived and decided to go on if my husband wanted to. The previous three miles had been tough - the open sea with wind almost picking you up off the ground added to the thought of another three hours to go . But he was up for it so off we went.

Now all we needed was to find the toilets. Birchington  turned out to be further on than we'd thought. No toilets to be seen .
                                          About half an hour later, we found some
at West Bay. I would not have used them had I not been desperate.

It was a spur of the moment decision to do a practice walk last Friday and it took a while to get ourselves out of the house. Although the sun was shining, the forecast  for the rest of the day wasn't good. So we said we'd play it by ear.

The way to Reculver was familiar to us and there were some interesting things to see along the way, mainly little communities of dog walkers. The humans standing in a huddle with their "friends" while all their the canine pets ran about, happy to be out. And people taking their leave saying " Got to go, see you tomorrow. Hope Jinny feels better, give her my love", at which point they all decide to disperse. Yes, a proper unified group.
It's true what they say, if you move to a new area, you either need a new baby or a dog to  make friends. People speak to you if you have one or the other.  Having had children around me for many years, it seems to me that the dog option is preferable for that.

So we said goodbye to Reculver and after a while trod uncharted territory - well, for us anyway. We prayed as we went along silently and also did the rosary. This will be part of our Camino later.

Just further along in West Bay we came to a cafe . A beautiful spot where people were eating lunch and enjoying the sheltered bay to get a bit of warmth from the sun.
We find a spot on the wall near the cafe and sit down to have another coffee. Hubby gets out his sketch book and we while away a half hour or so, watching people coming and going . Here is hubby with cafe in the background . You can just see his sketch book.

And here is what he was looking at.

And so, we're off again. And it seems to be bay after bay, in and out of the shade and on and on.

Walking has a meditative effect after a while and you just keep putting one foot in front of the other. And as you do your senses start to pick up the natural world around you . You become aware of the whooshing in and out of the sea, of the gulls squawking, and when the path takes you a little way off from the sea, of crickets in the grass and the sweet sound of the more delicate smaller birds.
       The rythym takes over and you give way to it.

At last we see a view of Magate. And we keep walking. And walking . The white boxlike building that is the Turner Centre gets no closer it seems.
 five hours later ( should have been four by our calculations, but at least it wasn't six) we get there. I am so chuffed we made it .

Are we glad to get the train back to Herne Bay and walk the final mile home. 

When we do our Camino this will be the daily length of our walk  - or even a little bit further. More practice is needed , I think.



  1. Thirteen miles is a LONG walk, and I am so proud of both of you for doing it! Your determination is inspiring. You have a lovely route to walk, and I am sure it will become easier as you get more practice in. Such a healthy way to share the time together. I loved your husband's sketching too! Your comment about dogs being the easier choice over children made me laugh, so true! :-) Have a good week ahead, Maz!

  2. Wow. Thank you for this. I need this little trip! Beautiful post, but even more that you shared this together! Hugs!


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