End of Year Walks

Most years we have some kind of a family Christmas, usually at home, and one of our traditions is to go on walks. On either Boxing Day or Christmas Say, we walk the five or six miles (depending on the route we chose) for lunch at my sister’s house, partly for a little exercise, but also because there is generally no pubic transport. We could cycle, but usually we have more people staying with us than bikes- or even people who can’t ride a bike, so we walk.

We are happy to accept a car ride home, though I suppose we could also walk back, but its less comfortable in the dark. We could take a taxi, but I don’t work on these days and don’t want to make someone else work.

I no longer have a driving licence, and seldom drove for the last 45 years, partly for environmental reasons – and I’ve also, whenever possible avoided flying – I can still just count the number of journey I’ve made on my fingers.

And later in the holiday, usually either New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day we take a longer walk. Last year, on 31st December it was from Sudbury to Brentford, some of it along the River Brent and the Grand Union Canal.

I’d planned the route to have something to appeal (I hoped) to all of the family, with a section through an industrial estate at Perivale, a couple of interesting churches and a long section by rivers and canal.

It turned out to be a little too long – or rather we walked too slowly – and we ended in darkness and missed a train home by seconds – and so had half an hour to wait for the next, but otherwise it was fine. Though I did have to drag people past a tea-room screaming when it was really far too late to stop.

And certainly the weather could have been better. We climbed the hill to arrive at a well-known viewpoint and could see very little. And there was just a little rain.

New Years Eve Walk
Boxing Day Walk


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My London Diary : Buildings of London : River Lea/Lee Valley : London’s Industrial Heritage

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