Saturday, January 11, 2014

Bournemouth evening

DSC02595 (1300x961)The Bournemouth Pier dates back to the 1850’s, when a wooden jetty was built out from the growing seaside resort.  It was extended during the 1890s, demolished during the Second World War, rebuilt and refurbished to its present configuration.  I’d been planning a trip to see it for a month, but only found time today (after joining Poole’s Leisure Center and attending a luncheon, keeping resolutions). The weather couldn’t have been better, clear and calm after the weeks of storms.

DSC02636 (1300x975) DSC02656 (1300x975)

The beaches were filled with walkers, taking pictures and holding hands in the gathering dusk.  The sunset was as good as any in Key West or Italy, rich and red against the languid cobalt sea.

DSC02665 (1300x1123) DSC02610 (1126x1300)DSC02620 (1300x974) DSC02633 (1185x1300)

I strolled the boardwalk, ate traditional haddock at Harry Ramsden’s, and talked with folks huddled in the beach huts.

DSC02691 (954x1300) DSC02676 (1300x957)

But mostly I watched the changing light, listened to the waves, and soaked up the peaceful evening.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Flooding Sandbanks

DSC02562 (1215x996)Millionaire ­residents at Sandbanks in Poole, Dorset, were cut off after the high tide flooded the only road leading to the ­peninsula.  The bill for flood and storm damage is likely to reach millions.  Jan 4, 2013

I went looking for coffee along Sandbanks Beach this morning without realizing how much damage had occurred over the weekend.  Great mounds of sand were piled along the beaches, drifted against the cafes, and submerging walkways, playsets, and parking lots.  A small army of laborers were out with shovels and tractors to put everything back into place, but it’s going to take some tie before things can reopen.

DSC02569 (943x1117)  DSC02571 (1300x973)DSC02558 (1300x976) DSC02559 (1300x921)

Long-term residents that I talked with over coffee at Branscombe Beach say that they haven’t seen anything this bad in as long as they have lived here.  Nobody seems sure whether it was high tide, storm surge or a combination.

But everyone agrees they will be a while digging out.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Thames rising

DSC02541 (1300x975)I’m in the UK, working my way north for meetings and vendor qualifications.  The rain and wind has been brutal all along the way, splashing through the New Forest and squinting along the M3 .  In Reading, the Thames was rising hour by hour, submerging businesses, homes, and bridges.

A nice walk upstream past the Church of Saint Peter Caversham gave lots of views of the swirling waters, the houseboats pulling at moorings, and the swans zooming by, all caught in the current. 

And they are predicting snow by mid-week…

DSC02556 (1300x959) DSC02547 (1300x958)DSC02543 (1300x975) DSC02553 (1300x972)