Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Industrial east of the Thames

It was glorious sunny on Sunday so we went for a walk along the Thames from Woolwich to Erith.  This is a far cry from the green meadows, parks and stately homes to be found on the western edges of Thames Path.

East of Greenwich, and especially east of Woolwich, the Thames Path is desolate and industrial.  But there is a haunting quality to these riverscapes as can be seen by some of the photos.

Thursday, 26 December 2013

Between two Nutcrackers

I saw The Nutcracker performed by the Royal Ballet last week and next week I'm off to see a different version at The Coliseum (English National Ballet).  I don't why anyone bothers with boring ballets like Sleeping Beauty or Swan Lake when The Nutcracker is so much better.

But did you know The Nutcracker was originally a complete flop?  In 1892 it was dropped after fourteen performances as neither the critics nor the audience liked it.  

It was over 40 years before its first performance outside Russia (in Sadlers Well in 1934) and 10 years later its first (complete) performance took place in the USA.  Selections of the music were used in Disney's Fantasia with the conductor/narrator declaring that "nobody performs it (the ballet) nowadays".

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Heart scan

I was at Barts today for my bi-monthly MUGA heart scan.  The good news is that my heart is still holding up so I am on track to complete the full course of Herceptin.  Hurrah!

So I will be back again on Thurs for my next infusion of Herceptin - and after that I think there will only be 2 more to go.

I'm not sure whether I will be relieved or anxious after I finish the course. On the one hand, it will be convenient not to have to keep going to Barts every three weeks, and it looks like the veins in my right arm are on their last legs (as it were).

But I feel safer while I'm having Herceptin - as it might be keeping recurrences at bay.  Of course I do know that there is no advantage in continuing beyond a year.  There is strong evidence from trials that one year gives the same protection as two and the risk of heart damage increases the longer you take the drug.

Saturday, 7 December 2013

More Country walks in London

I thought I knew most of the country walks in London - either walked them myself or had at least heard about them (and therefore were on my To Do list).

But today I've discovered two walks that I knew nothing about:  The Cray Riverway (10 miles starting in Foots Cray meadows to the Cray Marshes and the Thames) and the Shuttle Riveryway (which connects the Cray Riverway at Hall Place with a branch of the Green Chain (which I was familiar with).

These walks are signposted and there is more information about them on the Bexley LA website.

Looking forward to trying them out.

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Round the Capital Ring

The Capital Ring is a 78 mile walk through parks, commons, woods,  canals and other open spaces in suburban London, all within 10 miles of Charing Cross.

We've been doing this walk in bite-size chunks, off and on, for more than a year, and we are now over three quarters of the way round.  The last couple of stages were particularly attractive due to the Autumn colours.