Monday, 26 March 2012

From Ely

Today has been is a welcome day of rest in Ely, and a chance for me to visit the top of the cathedral's octagon tower. From there, one can see the quiet sunlit countryside all the way back to Cambridge from where I walked yesterday. It looks peaceful, well-ordered and charming.

The mornings these days are often foggy; yesterday I set off alongside the A14 in a grey mist in search of the river Cam. The amount of debris by the main roads, presumably thrown from passing cars, is astonishing; in the space of half an hour I saw a boxing glove (blue, left hand), an almost brand new hand saw, a pair of leather high-heeled boots (black, female) and, believe it or not, a kitchen sink. By time I found the tow path by river at the village of Milton, the sun was up, and it was a warm day's walking along the Fen Rivers Way for lunch at the curiously named "Five Miles from Anywhere" pub. From there, a footpath cuts inland, and parallels the Great Ouse river as far as Ely. When the cathedral finally comes into view as one follows the winding flood bank there is a sense of relief; it seems one is at last approaching one's destination. But it proves to be an optical illusion, and an hour later, still plodding along, it doesn't seem to be much closer. Eighteen miles in one day is, I have discovered, quite tiring. Still, the clamber to the top of the octagon tower, built of massive oak beams nearly 800 years ago, helps put everything into clearer perspective.


  1. Robbie: Your energy is amazing. I see you expect to arrive in Edinburgh during the middle of the bank annual meeting. Talk about other worlds! I shall keep reading. I'm sure you really don't want to be bothered but are you carrying a mobile?

    1. Hi Bill, yes I have a mobile with me, though I can't always hear it ringing, especially when the winds are howling in from the the sea...enjoy the AM, though frankly I'd rather be in bonnie Scotland in May.

  2. Sorry Robbie that was me Bill T. Wasn't aware the nom de plume would appear.

  3. Greetings from grey, cold Vancouver. I remember Ely well. So now will you. Keep it up, Rob

  4. Hi Rob

    Shame I only just found your blog today, a few months earlier and I could have bought you a pint in Ely's finest pub, The Prince Albert, oh well.

    I've really enjoyed your posts, good stuff!