A train at 9.47am on a Sunday morning – after a short night and weather that could not be more depressing – demanded a lot of willpower. But I had my book and the prospect of a train trip, and even if it was going to be rain all day, that was enough to have me leave my bed and hop on board to Eastbourne. The BBC promised heavy showers all day.
While approaching Eastbourne it magically cleared up and the grey clouds turned into sunshine and while setting a first few steps on a very steep hill in the direction of Beachy Head I discovered a couple of things:
I really need to work on my condition
Love never ends
and most importantly
I live in one of the most beautiful countries in the world.
Warning: Lots of pictures in this post.
Beachy Head is a bit outside Eastbourne. I took a bus to the foot of it, expecting to walk a bit to reach it. When I asked a friendly lady in the bus how to get there she asked me if I was used to walk. I said yes, I mean I walk in London every day right? She told me to take the very steep looking path up the hill and just continue walking. Is it as steep as this all time I asked her? No there are 4 hills you have to pass, it’s a beautiful walk.
It was an extraordinary walk, but I admit that I was ready to turn after the first hill, as my legs had already turned into jelly. But the first hill was the steepest one, and taking it slowly with a lot of pauses to take in the landscape and to regain my breath I suddenly stood on Beachy Head.
And decided that the view from there was worth every step in the walk towards it. It was sunny, I was walking in a long sleeved t-shirt enjoying the sun, and the view was absolutely unbelievable.
It was beautiful to walk around on the top of the cliffs, high up with an amazing view of the sea and the landscape. Unfortunately Beachy Head is also a popular place for people who can’t face life any more. A lot of people commit suicide here and jump. There were flowers and small crosses all over the place. It seemed such a harsh contrast with the beauty of this place.
To muse: to reflect or ponder silently. Which is exactly what I did on this spot, looking over the sea.
I continued my walk back to sea level and the beach of Eastbourne.
I can imagine that Eastbourne is stuffed with beach tourists in the summer. But on a Sunday in April it was relatively quiet. It is about a 1.5 hours train drive from London, and you can buy an off peak train ticket for £12.50 with Southern. With that ticket you can travel unlimited all day on any Southern train.
I was pretty knackered when I dragged myself in the train back to London that evening, but will definitely return to the coast for more light houses, fresh air and to pause a while and muse.