There are times when I get a desperate yearning for peace, quiet and the great outdoors. Last week was one of them. And, since Mr CK and I were celebrating our wedding anniversary, we remembered a remote little halt that we'd visited on our honeymoon. And off we went... Two buses and two trains later, here we were:
Berney Arms is a request stop, the penultimate station on the line to Great Yarmouth. But it feels a world away from its seaside neighbour. The first thing that strikes you (once the train has pulled away) is the absence of engine noise. Berney Arms can only be reached by train, by boat, or on foot. When we arrived last week we were the only people to alight from the train and we couldn't even hear any boats. But it was far from silent: the wind was whipping through the long marsh grass and sighing through metal posts. Berney Arms itself is so small that even the word "hamlet" is too large for it: a farmhouse, a windmill,
a pub, a noticeboard, a bench:
The bench is accurate. Just look at the vastness:
We fortified ourselves in the pub (I particularly enjoyed the half of local cider)then set off to walk along the banks of the Yare, heading for Reedham (the next stop on the line to Norwich). Last time we'd done this walk the sun was beating down, and atmosphere was incredibly still. We saw vast numbers of birds, including egrets. This time the wild headwind (with occasional gusts of crosswind)kept the bird numbers down. But we still saw a couple of egrets and the only humans nearby were on boats. The wind didn't do much for my hairstyle...
but the walking was invigorating.
After a couple of hours we were in Reedham and the sun was shining. We spent a very pleasant interlude sipping more local cider, this time from the Lord Nelson Inn.
The whole day was blissful.