Sunshine – In the November 2019 issue of the U3A Magazine Jill wrote an informed article about the lectures she had listened to at the Royal Institution arranged for the U3A – one of the subjects was ‘Sunshine’. When natural sunlight hits the skin it triggers the body’s production of vitamin D and so gets its name, “the sunshine vitamin.” This vitamin is a crucial ingredient for overall health and it is advised to get at least 10-15 minutes of sunlight daily. Among the many benefits, including aiding depression and boosting the immune system, adding a little sunshine to your life can even promote weight loss. The message is clear – even (or especially) in the depths of winter, wrap up warm and get outside – and this is what 14 members of the Walking Group did on the Monday between Christmas and New Year. Not only was it good to meet and chat again but the added bonus was an abundance of ‘sunshine’.
It was a local walk starting from the clock tower and heading east through the fields of Wick Farm. It is always a pleasure to walk through this farm as not only is it well maintained, but also birdlife is encouraged and abounds. Those of us interested were delighted to see large flocks of smaller birds feasting on the seeds and other larger birds picking berries from the bushes as well as raptors, geese and other water birds. We later met the farm owner, a very keen bird watcher, who had just witnessed a peregrine falcon dive down and take a Dunlin.
Being a leisurely walk, with no hills and no chance of losing anyone, there was plenty of time to chat to all the group members and with the sunshine all were in a good mood and pleased to be out stretching their legs after their recent celebrations.
We passed the solar panels, which have blended into the countryside really well. Around the farm are informative panels and the one about the solar panels informs us that in 2018 it provided enough electricity for half of the households in Burnham for a year (around 1900 at that time!).
We returned to Burnham along the seawall and those with cameras were kept occupied taking photos of the sunlit scene.
We ended our walk in the Bistro on the Quay (formerly Quayside) and although we hadn’t pre-ordered our food it was served in good time and enthusiastically devoured. The sunshine had obviously worked its charm as the good mood continued but even if it did help with weight loss the good work was soon undone.
Next Walk: Tuesday 28th January Meet for 10.00 at Bunsay Downs Golf Club, Woodham Walter CM9 6RU