Sculpture on a house in Hemingford Abbots, Cambridgeshire

DSC01913.JPG

DSC01913.JPG Originally uploaded by escdotdot.

This is a shot of a house that I passed yesterday while out walking. My eye was drawn to the metal reliefs attached to the wall. Things like these reliefs are what I look forward to most when I’m out walking – random pieces of artistic expression out in the wild.

Stylistically the house looks like it was built in the ’60s, and on the side wall of the wing have been applied some metal sculptures. As far as I can tell they’re the same piece repeated and rotated to create this arrangement. On each piece the silver metal is sculpted into layers which are then lifted and folded to form the relief. The piece or pieces remind me of the abstract artworks featuring repetiton that were being produced in the ’60s by Erwin Hauer or Norman Carlberg.

It looks like there’s some question over their status (or value) as ‘sculptures’ as the present owner of the house has hung a bird-feeder off the part second from the right on the bottom row (somewhat obscured by the tree in this picture). I don’t really care if they’re ‘sculptures’ or not, and – if I was being pedantic – I would also question their quality either as sculptures or as ornaments, but what I would say is they’re a great addition to the house and add a point of interest to the scene.

france

I’ve just got back from a short holiday in the South of France.

I went with a group of friends to the Languedoc-Roussillon region and stayed in a cottage in Fenouillède, a small hillside hamlet nestled between two rocky peaks with ruined Cathar castles at the top.

You basically have a wide glacial valley flanked by ranges of tall mountains on which the Cathar built their strongholds, all of which are perched at the top of the highest points and are very difficult to get to. The landscapes are what I imagine Switzerland looks like.

One thing that struck me was how French towns are full of very old, dilapidated buildings. In England I think they would have all been tidied up or redeveloped. But they add a great deal of charm to the place.

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saving the pony

So, there’s this larger-than-average kissing gate as you stop following Monk’s Lode and cross some fields back into Wicken.

And the lock isn’t very secure, so that it easily pops open, leaving the gate standing ajar. One of the ponies had managed to negotiate this and got trapped on the wrong side of the gate. When I reached the gate the rest of the horses and ponies were milling around while the trapped pony was trying to find a way to get through the fence. I managed to coral it through the gate and back to freedom. I suppose someone else would have done the same thing if I hadn’t.

Every time the pony had it’s back to me, as I was guiding it through the gate, I was thinking this is a very bad position to be in, I hope it realizes I’m trying to help and doesn’t kick out. Nice pony.

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to do list

Where are all the images?

After all it’s “words and pictures from escdotdot.” To do this I need to adapt the template to create space for them, rather than have them as standard blog entries. And I need to figure out the technical side of things – I’m looking at a some WordPress plugins to facilitate this.

IE

I need to work on fixing the display issues with IE.

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Lolworth round trip

The walk

Another scorcher of a day.

Went out this morning, before it got too hot, and went for a walk from Lolworth, through Childerley, Knapwell and Boxworth back to Lolworth. Even at that time the heat was very intense.

This was a beautiful walk, just the right mix of country and village areas, gently undulating paths through enclosed, tree-lined routes and open fields. If I was into ranking things, I’d give it an eight out of ten.

It took about three hours which seems to be my ideal length, I find my hips start hurting quite a lot after that – not sure what that’s all about, it’s one of those things that you’re not quite sure is normal or if there is a genuine medical problem.

The self-analysis

I’ve always had this pain. I remember I used to go for long walks around London and when I was on solo holidays. When I was on my own I didn’t seem to be able to regulate myself, I would just walk, and walk, and walk. And a number of times I would get back in such pain.

I used to have this thing about turning around on a journey – I just couldn’t do it. If I was walking somewhere I’d get really self-conscious about the point at which I’d think “right, that’s enough, time to go back”, I couldn’t just stop and turn around and retrace my steps, I had to find a way to go on a round trip with no overlap. I think I felt that people would think I was odd, just stopping and turning around.

On a related note to the hips thing, I really hurt my ankles one time walking around Padua. I knew I was hurting, but I just wouldn’t stop. I guess I just didn’t feel safe stopping. I didn’t have a map and I’d walked out of the part of the town I knew and into a suburban area on the edge of the town, so I was feeling kind of out of place. I had to just keep walking until I found my way back to an area I recognized.

I still have this problem with turning around, actually, although I’ve now developed a ploy of making a show of stopping, checking my watch or phone or something, to make it look as if I’ve remembered something, or I’ve just got a message, something that would be a good reason to turn around.

That’s insecurity, right? Because I can’t do anything without thinking of what other people would think.

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