I’ve recently started a new routine: evening walks a couple of times a week with my pal Beauty and her mum. In an Anglican sort of way, we began the day after Rogation Sunday, just over a week ago, when Vicars are traditionally meant to ‘beat the bounds’ of their parish ie walk around the boundary.
We don’t quite beat the bounds, but we do a good half hour loop within the parish, past houses and the metro line and through a local park. We go at about 6.30pm, whilst the Vicar puts the kids to bed.
I’ve found I’ve been sleeping better already. I’m not sure we’re walking fast enough for it to help much with my waistline, but so far I’m loving the exercise, the open air and the chats. I’m hoping we’ll keep it up in the weeks to come. I think it may prove to be a good source of blog material too, given the encounters we’ve had so far.
As you’d expect in our parish, you get to see interesting sights on a walk about in the early evening. As we set off there are normally some squealy kids on scooters and bikes in the churchyard. Sometimes we have a chat with them as we head off past the metro stop. The first time we walked we spotted three dodgy looking chaps in a patch of woodland. Local police confirmed that that area was being used by drug addicts, now that they’ve cleared away from the churchyard.
Another night we spotted the local drug dealer with his new car and last night there was a whole cluster of dubious characters hanging about on the street when I got home, including a druggie I recognised. I think they’d been collecting their doses. But the oddest thing yesterday evening was meeting the Russians.
As we passed one of the metro stops we walk by, there was a group of people looking like puzzled tourists. Not a normal sight in our post industrial town with nothing to do. When we chatted to them, they were trying to work out the best route to the Birmingham National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in the morning. As we made suggestions about possible routes (it’s not entirely straightforward from here) we got chatting. It turns out they were from a manufacturer of printing presses based in Moscow, who were over here for a trade fair. They were staying in a local hotel and had ventured out to see if they could have an evening out in Birmingham. Hope they had fun and managed to get to the NEC on time this morning.
I’m loving my evening walks. Can’t wait to see what we’ll come across next time we’re out.