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The River Itchen ran under the bridge and disappeared on one side through a pair of culverts under a building built over the river. On the other, it burbled past the back gardens of pink brick houses that rose beyond its green banks, gardens full of shades of August yellow, and wound on around the Cathedral Close. Swans floated nearby, their numbers doubled in rippling reflection. Sophie wondered if swans were resident on all English rivers, paid perhaps by the Tourist Authority.
Ghosts of the Heart, Chapter 8
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Once through the Battle Abbey gatehouse, the path led along a crest from which the land sloped down to green fields. Almost a thousand years ago, Sophie read on the signs posted along the way, the invading army had come from over the low hills on the horizon into these English fields – probably more sere in mid-October. Today the tops of the grasses were just beginning to dry in the August heat. Here, where she was walking, the Saxon army had stood to repel the Normans. Here, on the high ground.
Sophie stopped dead still. Not twenty-five feet away a rowboat was pulled up onto the shingle. A bushy, burly man covered from shoulders to ankles in a ragged oilskin cloak was heaving wooden casks from boat to shore. A tattered boy of eight or nine ran barefoot across the shingle as if it were a dance floor, picked up a cask almost half as big as he was, and staggered back with it the way he had come. The tall black shadows of the net sheds swallowed him whole.
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The track stretched away toward the castle, the sheep nibbled at the green, and the dry tops of meadow grass stood still in the summer sun. Looking around, Sophie could see nothing of the 21st Century. She took a deep breath laced with a salty hint of the sea, living for a moment with the reality of Max and his world. Then she turned back towards her own.
"The church was cooler. It was old, with thick stone walls. Tall, slender windows kept out most of the bright sunlight, some of which streamed through a small inset of stained-glass full of blues and greens, creating a puddle of underwater light. Sophie sank into a pew where no light fell. Peace swept over her like a blessing, as she rested her eyes on the blue-green ripples that played on the stone floor." Read more about Romney Marsh Church
Hangs one that gathers samphire; dreadful trade!
Shakespeare, King Lear Read more about Samphire Hoe
“Christchurch Gate. 1517. Bronze figure of Christ installed 1991 replacing the one used for target practice by Parliamentarians in 1642.”
She looked up at the huge figure above her. “Still not easy to miss,” she muttered to herself. She thought he looked a little disgruntled, a little wary. Keeping a sharp eye out for archers, no doubt. Read more about The Gatehouse
The ferry carrying soldiers to ships waiting in Thames Estuary would pass beneath London Bridge at any moment. The shops and houses that lined the bridge closed off any direct access to a view of the river, so Alice and her companions had crowded onto a small balcony at the rear of a public house where they had been escorted from the court to send off husbands and lovers. Read more about Prologue
Sunrise this morning shone through these stones as it has done on the Winter Solstice these several thousand years. Two years ago, I drove by on the the eve of the Summer Solstice and got caught up in the traffic heading in. The beautiful people in the car next to me - wreathed in flowers and smiles - invited me to the dance, but I couldn't go then. Read more about Solstice