Believing that you never walk the same walk twice, this week’s Sunday on the Shining Shore walk is a close variant of our last one. More mosses closely studied, once again as spiritual as it’s physical, and a more or less sacred ending where the darkling Dee Estuary reduces us both to a respectful and awestruck silence. Let’s walk.
Beginning up on top of Thurstaton Common, with the Estuary to the south-west of us, and Liverpool Cathedral back on the other side of the Mersey to the north-east. Sarah’s soon partway down the cliff, seeing what species of moss are flourishing here. “In what’s actually a heathland habitat” I hear her exclaiming.
Even the walls along Telegraph Road at the foot of the hill are resplendent with mosses that, close up, seem to be talking to each other.
Lunch is had in St Bartholomew’s churchyard at Thurstaston. Then we’re off along the lanes again, the hedgerows having noticeably less colour in them than a week ago. Their winter dieback mostly done now.
The stream down through the boggy dungeon is fuller. For standing in.
And the darkness is arriving through the winter trees. “In half an hour” we say “the sun will set.”
Still time for a Sarah display. A moss, an acorn and two earth stars.
And now, it’s time for sunset on the Shining Shore. We’ve decided not to go down on the beach today so we can watch from the cliffs. So let’s watch.
Then the night arrives. And we are walking in the dark.
Back home now and as I’m writing this the new mosses are already being studied.