So, the solar eclipse cometh… and goeth… Did you see it? No, us neither. Not a flurry of night owls nor a frazzled cornea in sight. Still, with our in tact eyesight we can, at least, see that the clouds have parted, and through them shines spring – after all, while the start of this most celestial of days may’ve been a wash out, we still welcome a big ol’ moon and the vernal equinox.
Tonight might be the night for naked stone circle dancing etc. but, once you’ve got your trousers back on (please), this season is all about getting into the great outdoors. Call it a hibernation reaction. Getting all Wordsworth-like in the dafs, petting the new-borns and generally rediscovering your joie de vivre. And while our fair city isn’t all farmland, it’s still the perfect place for it – as local artist and illustrator Alice Stevenson discovered.
Over the past few years, she has been, simply, walking London. Walking mindfully or adventurously, gleefully or miserably, discovering secret routes, special views and gratifying ways to link up the city – all of which she now shares in a brilliantly personal, beautifully illustrated (you might better recognise her work from the pages of Vogue, say) book, Ways to Walk in London.
From tackling heartbreak on Hampstead Heath to trawling bookshops on foot from Chelsea to Clerkenwell, via night walks, pub walks and the lesser-known post office walk, this is one seriously inspiring, clever collection of ways to enjoy London on two feet. Step to it.