December 11th – Orley Common & Christmas Lunch

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Once again Ernie led us on the last walk of year, a return visit to Orley Common, finishing at the Wellington Inn Ipplepen.

19 walkers set off on this bright but cold and misty morning. The mist conspired against us having the lovely distant views of Dartmoor we enjoyed last year.

Back at the Wellington Inn Bob welcomed several other members who were unable to walk with us today but who joined us for lunch. Thanks were offered to Bob & Jane for their coordinating role, and also to Dennis and Maureen G.

After this Ernie gave his usual summary of the year’s activities and presented the 2013 Welly Prize to Anne.


Ernie gives his report for 2013

Ernie gives his report for 2013

In spite of the good weather this summer my ramblings have been irregular so I had to dig deep to find a worthy recipient for the Welly Prize this year but a few odd scribbles in the little Black Book threw up a couple of ideas.

On the Teignmouth’Holcombe walk in July Arthur came close when he got carried away with his Sat Nav and ended up miles behind before we realised he was no longer with us-

On the same walk Val our lovely messy soprano at a loo stop only emerged from the facilities after the group performed three choruses of  “Why are we waiting?”. Could not give it to Val as she is already a member of the Stirring Prize fraternity-

This wilt be the tenth year of these fun awards so I was tempted to award myself especially as you will note from the following tail but modesty prevents: anyway,  its against the rules. That’s my excuse so here we go………

“A Flush with a Blush”

On a lovely early spring day a happy throng of 18 walkers led by little Ern set off from the Dartington Cider Press for a ramble around the Dartington estate via the banks of the river Dart .

Anne receives her Welly Prize

Anne receives her Welly Prize

The banks of the river were covered with a glorious array of daffodils and wild flowers. Little Ern, so taken with the scene, had gone into his own little world of William Wordsworth reverie “Wandering lonely as a cloud floating on high o’er vales and hills”. Suddenly coming down to earth he saw a “crowd of walkers that he was hosting, not the golden daffodils”!

Back from his vacant pensive state he also realised that they had overshot the return path back up to Dartington Hall by half a mile back along.
All was not lost –  SBO Orton in his best Capt Mainwaring mode ordered the about turn and marched the happy throng back on course.  Little Ern just followed with mind still ” blissfully fluttering and dancing in the breeze.”

Arriving at the Hall and after all the excitement of almost getting lost loo facilities were required.
One lady returned from the facilities somewhat agitated saying  “quick lets scarper before the emergency gang arrives as I pulled the alarm instead of the flush!”
Litlle Ern now back on track rushed the party to the adjacent Japanese Garden out of harms way and for a little calm and quiet contemplation.

Thus Ann for your flush with a blush you are the “Welly Prize” winner for 2013.”


orley12Maureen K was on hand with her camera to take orley15 a few shots of the misty landscape as well as photos of us all in party mode at the Wellington.

You can see all of Maureen’s photos by clicking on this link