Yesterday’s fog is long gone, and this morning dawned bright and clear. With golden sunshine streaming in on us, we decided to take advantage of the day. We drove down to the seafront (aka the River Thames) where we stopped at a few of our favourite places, simply to enjoy the view. First stop was in Old Leigh:
Then on to Shoebury
before driving out into the countryside to Wallasea Island for a long wander along the sea wall. It’s an interesting place, situated in between the Rivers Crouch and Roach. A reclaimed wetland, it is transitioning from farmland into a first-rate nature preserve, the largest project of its type in Europe. It can be pretty bleak in the winter and brisk at just about any time of year, but today was as mild and still as I’ve ever seen it.
I walked as far as the sea wall went, all the way to the little shelter/hide at the end of the path, while Jeff poked around in the mud for fossils and communed with the wildlife (we saw butterflies, birds, a gazillion insects and an adder who was out sunning herself until we scared her away with our footsteps. I didn’t get a photo, but neither did I scream… I found the flowers far more appealing…
Heading back inland, we stopped in Canewdon for a closer look at the 14th century Parish Church of St Nicholas.
There was a service taking place inside, so we kept to the outside where we enjoyed the architecture and Jeff managed to collect some conkers for the kids in his life.
Driving home, we made one more stop for some lunchtime sustenance from the shellfish stand at the bottom of our hill.
Way back when I was still young and idealistic and attending a church-funded university, I came to understand that going into nature is as spiritually renewing as entering even the loveliest of cathedrals. Today’s jaunt took me straight to my spiritual source.