Thursday, August 18, 2011

Peddle Faster!

There the noise of the waves and the movement of the water, taking hold of my senses and driving all other agitation from my soul, would plunge it into a delicious reverie in which night often stole upon me unawares. The ebb and flow of the water, its continuous yet undulating noise, kept lapping against my ears and my eyes, taking the place of all the inward movements which my reverie had calmed within me, and it was enough to make me pleasurably aware of my existence, without troubling myself with thought.
from "Fifth Walk" in Reveries of the Solitary Walker

I have wondered what it is to be pleasurably aware of ones existence, and I think we came close to this Rousseauian state last weekend in Hunstanton. After working hard all week, a few friends and I decided to ditch our books and bike to the coast in search of some leisure. Originally we planned to bike all the way there on friday, stay the night, and bike back on saturday or sunday, a grand total of 120 miles. In theory this sounded great, but, luckily for us, all the hostels were booked. Thus, we decided to take a Train to King's Lynn and then bike the 15 miles out to Hunstanton for the day. I say luckily for us because, although it would've been great to be all hard core, our behinds were killing us after a mere fraction of our intended mileage. Honestly, I didn't even want to get back on the bike after the 15 miles from the train station! Anyways, we ended up biking the most beautiful part of the journey through the country anyways and arrived at the coast with only a little worse for the wear.
 ready to go at the train station
Lavender Fields!

Hunstanton did not turn out to be the sandy, sunny, southern Californiaish beach that I expected, but I saw a place truly like none other that I have ever seen. Of course the first thing we did was replenish our energy with some fatty fried fish and chips. We then proceeded to collapse into a delightful food coma.

The rest of the day included rock jumping, cliff climbing, lighthouse searching, photo taking, and, of course, more eating. We escaped the rain for the most part, but the persistent gloom create a surreal, verging on sublime, ambiance. And there were a plethora of these weird, flat, green rocks.

Then the tide went out. And the sun began to set. 

Pure Magic.

 Walking on Water

We eventually made it back on the train to Cambridge (after a brief spell of thinking we were going to have be hobos and sleep on park benches). After a long day, we were all a bit out of it on the way home. Maybe me a bit more than the rest. I guess a picture is worth a thousand words.
They just wanted to see if I could fit in the luggage compartment. It's too bad we didn't capture the entirely graceful fall and the rousing applause from the other passenger when I fell out :)

In the end, it turned out to be just the leisurely saturday that we needed. As Rousseau so eloquently put it, we became pleasurably aware of our existence without troubling ourselves too much with thought. 

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