Pictures contributed by Nazmin and Christina; story by Celia.
This circular, six-mile, evening walk led by Christina was enjoyable from start to finish. About 15-18 of us gathered together outside St. Augustine’s Church in Ipswich for this pleasant and easy walk which was taken at a steady pace. The weather was very pleasant with a mixture of sunshine and cloud but no rain.
We started off at 7 pm along a footpath leading from Bucklesham Road which went through Bixley Heath. There were lovely views with wide open spaces and, best of all, wild flowers of every type and colour, ranging from yellow irises and pink rhododendron to red poppies and swathes of blue and white flowers of many kinds (which I have yet to identify!). I started off taking photos but this task was swiftly and ably taken over by Naz who had a good camera. Later we came across a horse, which did hold up proceedings a bit, as we couldn’t resist calling it over to stroke its nose. We had to run a bit to catch up with the rest of the group but managed this fine.
One of the best parts of the walk was a very long boardwalk which seems to go on for about two+ miles. The landscape was lovely and mysterious, running along with a stream on either side and weirdly shaped trees. I was reminded of a time I had walking in a rainforest in Australia and could almost imagine myself there rather than in sleepy Suffolk. Admittedly there were no brightly coloured parakeets although one of the group said she has spotted some in this country – I think escaped from a London zoo!
The walk continued in an up and down fashion across wide open spaces, until eventually we arrived back at St. Augustine’s Church at about 9.15 pm to go to our cars and make our way to the Shannon pub for a very welcome drink. It was still light at this lovely time of the year and we enjoyed socialising, laughing and talking about planning for IOG future events, possibly dividing the IOG members into categories of walkers (Stroller/Walkers/ Marchers/Hard Core Striders?) with a traffic light system (not really!).
I feel very fortunate that Christina has been happy to lead two six-mile evening walks already this year, which certainly suit me as a Stroller/Walker rather than a Marcher/Strider, with my rather short legs! Thank you, Christina, for leading us on such an enjoyable walk.