1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hey Guest, We're having our annual Winter Moot and we'd love you to come. PLEASE LOOK HERE to secure your place and get more information.
    For forum threads CLICK HERE
    Dismiss Notice

Day Out Walking The Hollow Ways

Discussion in 'Out and About' started by Wander, Nov 26, 2018.

  1. Wander

    Wander Nomad

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2017
    Messages:
    380
    Likes Received:
    348
    Location:
    Here There & Everywhere
    Weekend just gone, and I was feeling a little stir crazy because the weather had been a bit ropey and I hadn’t been out for a bit. But Saturday afternoon wasn’t so bad and I decided I would go out for a walk along a couple of hollow ways that run across the North Downs.

    [​IMG]

    Hollow ways can be found across the country and are deep track ways, often many feet below the surface, that have been steadily worn away over centuries, if not millennia, by human feet, animal feet, and weather. In cross section they are like a ‘C’ turned on its side with earth banks to the side and arching branches above.

    The lonely tracks across the open Downs are little more than scratches in the chalk. It is a pleasure in itself to walk them on your own but you soon come to accept those lonely pathways as a companion, and an eager companion at that - taking you by the hand and leading you over the feminine curves of the landscape into other places. I walked a short section across the grassy down-land, coming over one hill to find a kestrel hovering on the opposite side. This left us parallel to each other, at the same altitude, straight at each other - the same view.

    [​IMG]

    If the tracks are scratches then the hollow ways are deep gouges. So often they are flanked by yew trees whose roots claw through the banks like a Gordian knot and take you down below the surface world of the familiar into new lands, new worlds, new ways of looking and seeing. Though your physical horizons become limited your imaginative ones widen.

    [​IMG]

    Spots like these enable you to be part of the world and yet separate from it at the same time. Your imagination is both anchored and set free - tied to the place yet roaming over possibilities of what might happen. Old worries are forgotten, dark riders may approach, past loves come back without their faults, plans are planned, no company is needed or sought.

    [​IMG]

    Nothing is asked of the spirits above nor the spirits below.

    Another set of feet take their part, along with the many other feet that have been this way; the cattle, the carts, the rain and snow. All companions, one and all.
     
    Woody girl, Nomad64, Janne and 6 others like this.
  2. Toddy

    Toddy Mod
    Mod

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2005
    Messages:
    34,975
    Likes Received:
    1,307
    Location:
    S. Lanarkshire
    Beautiful :)

    Thank you.

    M
     
  3. Sundowner

    Sundowner Full Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Messages:
    803
    Likes Received:
    265
    Location:
    Northumberland
    Outstanding!! Well written and rewarding to read
     
  4. mousey

    mousey Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Messages:
    2,210
    Likes Received:
    251
    Location:
    NE Scotland
    Perfect combination of images and written summary.
     
  5. Macaroon

    Macaroon A bemused & bewildered

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2013
    Messages:
    7,115
    Likes Received:
    266
    Location:
    SE Wales
    Nicely written; sometimes far too much emphasis placed on images, methinks, but writing like this will summon the images and bring you along anyway.
     
    Toddy likes this.
  6. oldtimer

    oldtimer Full Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2005
    Messages:
    1,936
    Likes Received:
    604
    Location:
    near Oxford and Pyrenees-Orientales, France
    Thank you for sharing this. It brought back many good memories.
     

Share This Page