Minding Northumberland Guide‘s admonition not to attempt to walk across the mouth of the bay, with its wide expanse of sand, we’ll carefully skirt the edges, possibly venturing out to the water as long as we can safely keep ahead of the returning tide, and enjoy ourselves, rain or shine today.
Sometimes a short break is as good as a long rest, and we’ll have to hope that homily works for us this time, because ‘That’s shallots,’ as the onion seller remarked. It’s hard though, to believe that we’re holidaying in the same county in which we live; the seaside is so different to the upland North Pennines, after all.
Still, if curlews can move inland in the summer months to raise their brood (the pair in the field around us have successfully brought on three chicks this season to flying adolescence), we can avail ourselves of the reciprocal opportunity to visit their winter territory as well.
Our son snapped one of the curlew parents in mid-flight during a family walk up here a few weeks ago — no doubt it was sounding its plangent cry to warn the little group away from the fledglings, as it soared across their field of view. Like a family visit from urban Edinburgh to the deep country, we’ll feel a bit like tourists in our own county on Budle Bay, and yet, having visited Northumberland’s coast many times over the past years, it will be familiar too.