You probably think you’re seeing double! This is the opening photo for my most recent walk, Boxing Day Blues. It’s hard to select favourites but my criteria is often that a photo takes you back to a moment in time. For me this was a clear, bright, quite unparalleled December day.
Would you believe that this one was taken in August, but how could I leave out such a winning smile? Gargrave in the rain was one of the most joyful moments of my past year. A wedding anniversary weekend!
By contrast, Autumn this year was a riot of colour, and I can still feel that warm November sun on my back as I stood in the churchyard, surveying the magnificent ruins of Flamboyant Autumn at Easby Abbey.
October was a time of great sadness for me. I never could have guessed that, as I looked up at this church in Alternative Ayamonte, my Dad had only hours to live. I was abroad in my beautiful Algarve, but my heart really wasn’t in it.
How could it only have been a couple of weeks before that I was so joyfully walking the Water of Leith, excited to meet for the first time with my lovely friend Jude? A landmark event!
Can’t help but share a moment of north eastern pride with the celebrated Tall Ships Regatta at Blyth in August. How proud Dad would have been of the Polish ships taking part. He was always a patriot.
Which transports me back to July, when I met a lady with a fabulous smile in the City of Birmingham. It was my first time in the city and I loved it. Thanks, Gilly! I know I made a friend for life.
It was a water lily Summer. They were everywhere! I visited many beautiful gardens, such as Newby Hall, in June. Funny how so many of you were more interested in the cake than the flowers!
I spent two wonderful weeks in Poland to coincide with the May Bank Holiday. My cousin Adam is a baker but always manages a few days off that weekend for his birthday. It was Dad’s favourite time to go, and I was so happy that I got to spend this precious time with him. Naughtily though, I did manage to escape, into the arms of another friend for life- Meeting Meg!
In that early part of the year I was leading a charmed life. My visit to Poland was sandwiched with trips to the Algarve and many walking excursions. A day at Mertola in the Alentejo was particularly memorable.
April, always the time for lambs, I threw one little chap into total panic as I held a gate open for him. Lambkins and Bikes– a winning combination?
I was delighted to have my lovely daughter home for Easter, in March. The highlight of that weekend was the Butterfly Trail in nearby Preston Park. They are incredible creatures, and almost as exotic as my daughter.
February in the Algarve is synonymous with Amendoeira– Almond Blossom. And, of course, Carnival, but that’s an entirely different story.
And so we find ourselves in January, and Saltburn in Winter. It’s a lovely seaside town on the North Yorkshire coast, a place I like to stroll at any time of year.
What a year of highs and lows it’s been. I have Paula to thank for leading me back through the months. Thursday’s Special this week is Retrospective. Don’t miss it!