Text contributed by Gill, pics by Anni
Each Thursday evening throughout the successive lockdowns, six of us have joined up for Jay’s Virtual Pub Quiz – well, more to have a laugh and share a virtual glass than with the goal of excelling, actually, although there is a little friendly rivalry with Sally’s team, likewise quizzing. Last Saturday five of the team (M-L in Amsterdam, pining to join) and Sally met up for some outdoor face to face time – finally. [ed.]
An early morning flurry of messages. Should We? Could We? Would we? The preceding day’s rain had left pockets of Suffolk flooded, with roads closed and surface water of unknown depths on country lanes. However, after a second lockdown and interaction curtailed to a weekly quiz zoom, we were clearly eager to meet up face to face (albeit 2 metres distanced) and all agreed they would assemble at the Ramsholt Arms car park at 10.30. Some very tentative driving through large puddles ensued whilst the rain was driving hard. As we all donned wet weather gear the weather dried up and the clouds parted to reveal some winter sun which cheered our spirits enormously.
As we slipped and slid along the muddy path beside the Deben, the rain-washed landscape was superb in its colour and atmosphere. The 6 walkers (regulations strictly followed!) chatted incessantly, happy to be free of the impediments of zoom or skype. This is what we had all been waiting throughout lockdown for – the chance to tramp about the countryside with friends – so we made the most of it.
As we made our way towards Shottisham, passing the impressive Woodhall Manor, we were informed by the local postie that we were approaching Fairyland. This appeared to be a collection of thatched properties clustered at the end of the tree lined drive. Charming, yes but alas no fairies to be seen, just a pair of dancing hares on a ridgeline. A picnic lunch was had at the Sorrell Horse, unfortunately closed, before winding our way back to Ramsholt.
A lovely walk, led by Barry, which reminded us all just how beautiful the Suffolk estuaries and surrounding countryside can be, and just how much we have been missing the opportunity to get out and explore together.