online: 18 may 2015
modified: 18 may 2015
17 may 2015 in a forest
...the Vale of Health consists of fifty or more houses... without a
single church, pub or even a shop... but with a notice board... and a
post box... and several blue plaques denoting former residence of
...Rabindranath Tagore, D H Lawrence, J L and Barbara Hammond (social
...the village was also a meeting-place of John Keats, Percy Bysshe
Shelley, S T Coleridge, and other 19th century romantics who used to
visit the house of Leigh Hunt (which seems not to be marked by a
plaque)... and there is a row of houses named Byron Villas.
...the place was named Vale of Health when London (then several miles
away) was suffering a plague...
...but this is not a history book... nor a tourist guide... i intend it
as a place when one can write-and-read and enact natural or
supernatural* events that can occur as we become aware of what happened
in the city forest... and what is happening in our thoughts...
*...i remember someone thinking that 'thought is supernatural'...
...at which a man and two women and two dogs walk by... while the man
keeps both women laughing...
but the dogs do not laugh...!
...and now after writing for half an hour i note the emptiness of the
village street in which i saw only one or two people come or go
...(though i saw about two dozen people walking or running on the
footpath encircling the village...
but i came here to walk as well as to write so now it's time to be
...i note the departure of the first car to leave or arrive in half an
hour... and two delivery vans of food purchased via the internet...
...so a village without shops is now quite feasible... collective
actions like shopping being now possible at home (with delivery by road
of materials not transmittable electronically)...
it's been a dry spring and the forest floor is not slippery... so this
evening i enjoyed negotiating some of the steep slopes that have
recently been half cleared of undergrowth...
...but i missed the profusion of squirrels and rabbits... has someone
been poisoning them out of existence?... or is that the effect of
...or did i fail to see most of the squirrels and rabbits because of
worsened eyesight... or because they are in hiding?...
...on my way out of the village i noticed a plaque at Rose Cottage where
the newspaper founder and editor Lord Northcliffe lived (as Alfred
Harmsworth in his childhood)...
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