Despite it being late April, today's chilly northern breeze made us put on our warm clothes as we headed for a Sunday morning walk on the Downs (South Downs National Park) to blow away the cobwebs and get some exercise.

The good thing about windy weather is that it keeps the air clear and invigorating and makes for interesting cloud formations in the sky (will that big grey cloud heading rapidly towards us soak us with rain, or will it be nice to us instead?)

There were plenty of sheep and cows with their young enjoying being out in the fields again after the winter and this cow was making the most of a handy tree to have a jolly good scratch.

Up on the ridge the wind became a lot more gusty and a passing paraglider appeared to be having a bit of a problem as he approached an area of trees.  I think it was just that he was trying to turn around in perhaps slightly more challenging conditions, and I'm sure he (or she) knew what they were doing, but for a moment I did wonder if we would have to be involved in a parachute in the tree rescue situation.

As we headed back, we came across a sign outside the local youth hostel on the edge of the Downs which said that it was open for refreshments, so we went in to check it out.

What a nice surprise we had.  They have carried out refurbishments over the winter and now have a lovey sun lounge which is open to passing walkers and cyclists and where you can have tea and cake and admire the view.  There is also seating outside, so in the warmer weather ice-creams and cold drinks will be another option after a strenuous walk or bike ride.  I do love finding a new "refreshment" venue, particularly if the staff are friendly, the produce is good and the views are as good as this.

A pot of Fairtrade Tea For Two at the local Youth Hostel Tea Room


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