I got back to Britain a few days ago, and have spent the last few days staying with another alumna of the Big Ben to Brussels hike, Jane Hornsby. She and her husband live in Steventon, a small village outside Oxford, that boasts more than its fair share of lovely old houses. Jane’s house dates back to the 1500s.
I had a great time walking around the village with my new Sony NEX-5N, rediscovering the joys of photography. Wherever I am in the world (or at least, the land-based parts of it), I like to get out for a morning walk. It gets the blood flowing and allows a gentle transition from sleep into wakefulness. The challenge I face is that my brain cranks into top gear very soon after waking, and my walk has all too often been punctuated by pauses while I punch another item into the To Do list on my iPhone. I finish my walk and realise I don’t even know where I’ve been, because all my focus has been on what I have to do that day.
Photography cures this. It takes me into a different mindset, and quietens my chattering brain. I look around me and take notice of my surroundings, searching out interesting or quirky things to photograph. There is plenty of time later on in the day for my brain to get busy, so this hiatus of calm is much appreciated. I arrive back after my walk feeling refreshed rather than stressed before the day has even begun. It’s my walking/photographing meditation.
Here are some of the results – my pictures of Steventon. Enjoy!