I had another really tough day today, lots of pain and spells of sleep.
I decided to take a day off and went to The North York Moors, where I took a walk from Port Mulgan to Staithes.
Port Mulgan is a derelict quarry port, dominated by the high, crumbling cliffs of the Jurassic coast of the North East. The only way down to it is along steps cut in the cliff by local fisherman, in places so steep that there are ropes to hold onto.
All around is the vaguely worrying sound of rocks falling down to the beach. The cliffs here are full of fossils but many of them are so fragile that they fall apart as you pick them up; the seashells of long dead creatures that waited a couple of million years,just long enough to frustrate you as you open them up.
The path to Staithes hugs the cliffs. It's June, so the weather is beautiful, a clear sun and blue skies.
Rolling fields are to the left, blue sea on the right. As I walk down to Staithes, the path cuts across a field of golden barley, waving in the breeze at hip height. Without moving your arms, your hands brush against the seed heads, drying in the sun
In my mind I can hear Sting singing; 'Fields of Gold' and it seems just right.
Staithes lies on a dangerous coast but it has a unique rock formation that juts out giving the village a natural harbour, which means it has always been a fishing village and a port.
The little alleyways and old buildings are deceptive - the greengrocer there was a Ship's Chandlers 200 years ago and that made it the centre of the world.
And when James Cook got the wander bug he came to Staithes to be apprenticed to the local who sold supplies to passing ships. Later he was to move to nearby Whitby and after a while working as a whaler before he rose to captain and became the famous explorer. As a result, Staithes and Whitby are always full of Australians and New Zealanders looking for their roots. Above Whitby are a pair of Whalebones put in place by the Canadian Government as a memorial to the trade between the two countries.
At Staithes there are many pubs and seats on the front overlooking the sea where I eat lunch before walking back the way I came to Port Mulgan, uphill this time, along the cliff edge.
A fine day.
(a don't stop till you drop production)
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