Saturday, 9 March 2013


it is the second occasion
on which i have tried to bend the local landscape to my will
earlier we have reached the banks of the muddy avon
where a towpath snakes away promisingly into the distance
i ask a pair of old men out for a morning walk
if we can follow the river's course to clifton
instead they point us through queen's square and up past the cathedral
where we stop at a music shop
i enquire about their range of guitars
and try out a fender telecaster made in mexico
funny how i can never think of anything to play in these places
following our noses
we ascend the steep flank of brandon hill below the cabot tower
views over grey misty somerset
there is a genteel feel here among the georgian terraces and greenery
kids with shiny painted go-karts
and a superior play area
as we the top the crest of the hill and begin to descend
i stop a middle-aged couple to ask if this is the way to clifton
the man pauses for a moment
then with a thoughtful expression delivers a response after my own heart
'it could be' he says mysteriously
we emerge from the park on jacob wells road
at the foot of clifton hill
right outside the hope and anchor
one look through the large inviting front windows are enough
lined up along the bar are four or five ale pumps
the bar itself is bedecked with bundles of hops
the friendly barmaid humours my banter
and we find a corner table to pour hungrily over the menus
veggie burger, felafel and pints of caramely kingstone ale hit the spot
now it is time to lose ourselves in clifton village

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