Tony Grist (poliphilo) wrote,
Tony Grist

A Trip To Newhaven

C- who used to be one of my mother's carers- dropped by unexpectedly just minutes before we were due to set off in the car for our weekly outing- and as she hadn't got anything planned for the day we took her with us.

We stopped for lunch at the Blackboys Inn, then took a look at Newhaven- which is the only town on the stretch of coast we're hoping to retire to that we'd never visited before. It's an odd place. On the one hand there's the ferry port- that's the public face- then tucked off to the side is the old town- which is hard to get into because of the one way system and then when you reach it you wonder why you bothered. We visited a charity shop and unloaded some bags of stuff we'd been carrying around for a week or two.

Off to the side is the west bay- which is also odd- a fine anchorage enclosed on its western side by a mole that must be half a mile long- with nothing in or on the water except a big crane on a platform (of the kind they use for drilling deep sea oil wells). There's an indeterminate area that must have been a busy dockland once with low chalk cliffs behind- and beyond the mole a shingle beach that very few people know about. The cliffs are guarded by a large Victorian fort which we could have visited but didn't. It was built to counter the ambitions of Napoleon. No, not that one; his nephew- the one with the up-turned moustaches who ended his life as an exile in Chislehurst.

On our way home we stopped for refreshments in Alfriston. This time the ice cream shop was open but they're running their stocks down for winter and there were only five or six popular flavours to choose from instead of the usual long list of exotics.

Here are C and Ailz taking afternoon tea on the square in Alfriston. The bicycle is nothing to do with us. The tea shopper owners keep it there to stop people parking in front of their window.

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