My dad is a walker. Not a fair-weather stroller, a rambler nor a hiker - a walker. Most weekends, he puts on his walking shoes and disappears for a few hours - generally spending his time traversing the South Downs. Luckily, we live just over an hours drive away from some of the most gorgeous, dare I say it, quintessentially English, countryside. Think rolling green hills leading down to the glittering English Channel. On an early Autumn day, theres few places better to be than being swept backwards with the wind, cheeks rosy and an amazing view to reward you for a steep walk.
The last time we did this - a walk through Savernake forest or a drizzly September day - seemed far too long ago, so on one of the last days of the summer, my father and I set off to Alfriston for a walk. My dad does this most weekends between May and September, when the whether is fair and bright, not too hot and not too chilly; often being joined by my brothers. And until recently, I genuinely was not fit enough. In the past few years, I've lost a huge amount of weight, and grown immensely fitter in the process - however the kind of fitness you need to be able to walk up a 16% (in places!) incline is a very different one to the one that I've become in the gym.
As I said, my dad doesn't really consider it a 'walk' if its below 5 miles, and there isn't at least one hill to climb. So you have to come prepared, basically. It's really nice to have this time together - this walk was only a few weekends after my Grandmother passed away - and it was quite nice to just spend a few hours doing something that he enjoys. I'm going to make a definite point to do more of it when the weather picks up again, next year.
I also think that Alfriston is the most beautiful little village - the house pictured here is so beautiful - it reminds me of the little villages around Farnham, where I went to Uni that are really sweet, and probably cost two of my house put together. A girl can dream.. It also had the most gorgeous village green where we sat and munched sandwiches and drank cans of Fanta, watching whilst a family ate cream tea and scones with Champagne on deckchairs. How very British...