Earlier in the week, I mentioned how getting out and socialising had helped. Friday was a glorious day and I really felt a good walk in the country would be of massive benefit. I have been doing some short walks since I got out and about and so far I had managed just over a couple of miles. Friday I decided was going to push this a little further and had a good look at the map. Within 5 minutes walk from our front door our several footpaths all in different directions and I found one that could lead to a nice 90 minute circular walk. I packed my new shoulder bag I had bought for just this purpose with a few supplies and set off.
I walk down our lane towards the village of Pitminster and find the start of the footpath within a few minutes. It starts with a boundary of a ploughed field and then over the first of many stiles. These were interesting when I started walking post-op. For a couple of weeks when I started walking, these were not even a possibility and I kept to the roads. When I did decide to brave stiles, it was tentatively and holding on to anything I could for dear life. Now, they are a great deal easier and not really any great issue although I am still careful.
I traverse a couple of fields, a small footbridge and then back on to country lane for a short stint before in through a gate way and across the middle of a large field. The path was not clear and I was using a scan of an Explorer OS map to keep to where I needed to be. This building in the distance of this photo is Poundisford park, and my return path is over there. The field I am in is quite large and a small pond is over the far end and I see the next stile.
A short distance along the path is yet another stile which leads to a secluded grove. I take a photo of another stile which shows a reminder of a place I once worked. The less said about that the better...
This grove was quite overgrown to start with and it required a little pushing through. At this point the coffee I had had in town on the morning was taking effect and I was left in a situation of dealing with my first ever call of nature, in the middle of nature! This is something many of us joke about pre-op, about how we can still find a tree or a bush and use what we still have. Suddenly post-op, I am faced with a different reality entirely. I had anticipated this and packed mopping up supplies accordingly so it's unbutton the trousers (yes I do wear them occasionally) and squat down. Nope, that wont work, the angle is going to spray it all over my ankles. I stand up and try to rethink it all but I can see any other choice. I squat down again and decide to lean forward as much as I can. Then I am faced with a problem that I can't seem to go. I need to but it wont happen. It's the stress of trying to discover a position as well as the fear of being stumbled upon. Eventually it does happen, it did go where I wanted it to and I felt quite happy I had dealt with this little demon! A quick dry off with a baby wipe and it's trousers back up and off walking again.
I go over another stile and we are back to fields again. A large military aircraft flies over and I manage to get a picture of it as it does so.I walk further on and after some more fields I am greeted with the sight of the M5 motorway
It's a noisy thing and hard to believe that I can be so close to the beauty of nature with this monstrosity next to me. However, we need these roads so I have to put up with it.
I am greeted by more stiles and then a stream with no footbridge. It's a small affair but has a slippery bank the other side which requires thought given my recovering state. I manage to get myself up and then over another stile before being greeted by a wooded area. This requires some tricky navigation as the path is not defined and more than once I ended up with the way forward being blocked. I get through this and then come across a steel footbridge that goes across it and realise that I have driven under this bridge more than a hundred times and often wondered what the footpaths that led to it were like. Now I have found out!
I decide that for today, I am not going to cross over and continue across some more field before arriving back at Poundisford park. There is a line of daffodils along the path and in a week they will make for a nice splash of colour against the green of the field. I then pick up the road from before, across a couple fields and then along the road to home. My feet are sore and there is also a blister under one toe which is a sign that my walking shoes are brand new and need more breaking in! I am quite happy though, the weather was gorgeous and the fresh air and exercise has made me feel comfortably tired.
Oh yes, I did also take a selfie which is not so easy with a traditional camera!
P.S. Apologies for the layout of the photo's. Putting this many into a post was a new, and frustrating, experience. I will improve this with time :)