We crossed a small stretch of land with sandy paths through grass and a footbridge taking us over a stream. The whole place, with its shingly shore, looked singularly uninviting – so we were amused by a big notice telling us that ‘naturism is not condoned on this beach’! Goose-pimples wha-ho!! Colin daringly bared his knee for a photo-shoot, and then we carried on.
Whitstable Harbour is very much a working harbour, not touristy at all. It has piles of gravel one side, piles of timber the other and the fishing boats in the middle are smelly working vessels. I looked in one of them and saw a number of dead starfish abandoned on its deck. There is a fish market by the quay which was all but finished as we strolled past. One or two outlets were still selling fresh fish from tall black sheds which are used for drying nets. A group of fishermen in one boat were sorting out their nets on the quayside.
Nothing much was doing on that dull afternoon, we couldn’t get along the next few yards of beach because a private yacht club was in our way (we might have been able to sneak through, but we didn’t) so we walked along a pavement past some shops to Reeve’s Beach. A group of yobs were being a nuisance as they left a hardware shop, and one of them nearly knocked me flying as he hurriedly cycled past on the narrow pavement. When we arrived at Reeve’s Beach, one of them was peeing in a corner behind the sheltered seat and another shouted an obscenity right in my face. We had the feeling that they had gathered for a bit of glue-sniffing or similar, so we left swiftly down an alleyway which led to the High Street.
That ended Walk no.33, we shall pick up Walk no.34 next time at Reeve’s Beach in Whitstable – local yobs permitting! We called in at the ‘real ale’ pub in the High Street, then returned to the car (which was parked by the station) for a cup of tea before driving to Broadstairs in the gathering darkness.