Red Kites Walking Group
Tuesday July 19th 2016 was the hottest day of the year so far and this was the day I had chosen to accompany the Red Kites group for their weekly walk!! The temperature peaked at 33degrees.
The meeting place was the Crown Inn, Elton, where members were able to park cars, use the toilets and place lunch orders. I met Gill Coffey, the Red Kites Group Leader and was introduced to Roger and Gill, whose turn it was to lead the walk. Usually, most of the 27 group members will attend but on this day there were only nine brave souls, several people either being on holiday or crying off because of the heat. The group is 10 years old, most members being old stagers who will take it in turns to be walk leaders. Although all Peterborough U3A members they come from as far afield as Kings Lynn and Loughborough. Many are also members of Oundle U3A and tend to do activities in both organisations.
We set off to enjoy a planned six-and-a-half-mile stroll through the Northamptonshire countryside heading towards Yarwell and Nassington. I was conscious, when we met, that people were wondering if I was up to the pace and distance, being asked if I was a walker, but am relieved to say that I allayed their fears. About two thirds of the way around it was decided to make the walk a little shorter because of the heat. I protested they mustn’t do that on my account but was reassured that I looked the coolest and happiest of them all!!
I wandered along talking to several of the party and was in the middle of a conversation with Gill the day’s leader about occasional worries when cows and frisky bullocks are in fields when we turned a corner, came to a bridge over the river and there, at the other side of the bridge, was a great big brown bull just standing looking at us! Deciding there was safety in numbers we stayed together and quietly walked past him as he just looked solemnly at us. This was certainly the first time I had come within a couple of feet of a bull!! I did take a couple of pictures of the group to go on the website but decided not to stop to take a picture of this obstacle!!
Arriving back The Crown Inn was a welcome sight for all as we were a bunch of hot and weary walkers. The members who had decided just to meet at the pub for lunch and skip the activity certainly felt they had made the right choice!
My lasting impression of the Red Kites walking group was of a happy, vibrant, well supported group whose members enjoy many spin off social activities and friendships together including an annual holiday, meals out, informal get togethers etc.
The Red Kites are a shining example of the benefits of being a part of Peterborough U3A and many thanks to the group for allowing me to share the walk with them.
Roving Reporter (HK)
Happy Days on the Trail
Ah - a little shade and a seat