Sunday, 23 April 2017

Orford Ness...

I took the ferry yesterday morning to Orford Ness, a lunar landscape of marsh, shingle and lagoons, dotted with buildings dating from both world wars, and, on the seaward side, a lighthouse. Visitors are told to follow a particular route, because there are still areas of the Ness with unexploded ordnance; I was happy to stick to the marked paths. I saw the birds I expected to see - stonechat, wheatear, linnet, skylark - but it was a surprise to see avocets nesting. And a seal swimming, viewed from the shingle beach, which had a head like a black labrador.

Orford Ness is a strange and lonely place to take a wander. I’d hoped to get some pix, but the weather quickly deteriorated. I’ll return, in a month or two, when access to the Ness is on a daily basis, not just weekends.

I stayed in Beccles last night, a little town on the border between Suffolk and Norfolk. The Friends Meeting House is just around the corner from where I parked, so I went to Quaker meeting this morning. There were twenty people and twenty two chairs. The empty chairs were either side of me, perhaps due to the strength of my cheap cologne. They were friendly folk, but only two of them would have been under pensionable age, which does not augur well for the future of Quakers…

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