Being home – and when I say “home”, I mean the town in which I grew up. I left a long time ago, my heart left along time ago. My true home now is where I was based as a full-time volunteer. That is the place I belong. However, I enjoy visiting the town I grew up in very much. I have lots of fantastic memories and friends I can call in on even after all these years and know I will be welcomed warmly.
I have been spending the past two days catching up with old friends and visiting locations I have been longing to see. I have been taking lots of photos and will use them at some point to create posts that I will hope will be of interest.
However, there are things that I have seen that have saddened me a little. I was proud of the area I grew up in. The countryside around this town is idyllic. I would love to take you exploring the hidden footpaths that are generous with spectacular views and just provide a tunnel of shady green secrecy where you can stroll for hours without seeing anyone. This is not a town people visit for the walking. But it is blessed with beautiful places to walk.
In my late teens I started rambling all over Lancashire and Merseyside. In the summer I would often leave the house at 5.30am and quite literally walk all day coming home well into the evening. So long as I had water I could go on for miles although I did learn to pack a couple of snacks in my rucksack to make things easier for my weary body. It was so good for me to fall in love with the countryside on my doorstep.
Every now and then though I come across something that kind of makes me cross. Today it was when I was passing through a pretty glen with lush foliage providing welcome relief from the heat. I could hear a stream bubbling excitedly so I stopped on the footbridge to soak up the prettiness and serenity of that little spot. Then I saw in the water below, two shopping trolleys.
Such a beautiful and yet sadly some of the inhabitants of the town have dumped shopping trolleys and all sort of plastic and other rubbish into places that would have been perfect scenes of serenity and lush countryside. Further along a remote public footpath there was an even worse example of fly-tipping, rolls of carpet, pieces of board that looked like some kind of Ikea furniture, an armchair and a fridge-freezer had been hurled down a little ravine. Eeeeeed-yats!
Ay ay ay! If I were given the superpower of being anyone’s mum, I would take these fools and escort them to go litter picking and clear up their mess. I would confiscate anything precious to them – phones, cars, lap-top, X-box, I don’t care…I would be completely ruthless. Then I would take them stadium cleaning with me. They would have to scrape the gum from seats and sweep, mop, dust and wipe until they had an idea of how much better it would have been had they taken their rubbish to an appropriate place.
That is not something I have not done myself. I have helped to clean several massive stadiums, Bolton Wanderers, Manchester City, Everton, Stoke City, Wolverhampton, Bournemnouth, Twickenham…as well as indoor arenas. Actually I love it, a team of a thousand descend and work like an army of ants. It’s quite a sight to behold.
Aaaaah…I am going to shrug this one off and concentrate on all the prettiness I saw today.
Cue holiday spam:
Oh if you had been free for the afternoon, I am sure you would have loved the panoramic views. We had Winter Hill on one side of us and then the view from Blackpool Tower all the way down to Liverpool Docks and the city center. My friends claimed the hills of North Wales were visible, but it was not a clear enough day to discern them with clarity. Still I am sure they were there.