The Ship at Levington last April, newly refurbished and reopened just a couple of months earlier, it was a good place for lunch before a walk along the north shore of the River Orwell.
The view south overlooking Levington Creek to the Port of Felixstowe on the horizon.
We followed the boardwalk through the reeds down to the river wall.
We turned right along the riverbank, heading east into the trees.
The path climbed steadily with an increasing drop to our left down to the river.
A perfect spot for a rope swing!
It was irresistible. It must be my inner Tarzan. But he’s not so agile as he used to be. I waited whilst a passing cyclist negotiated a fallen tree. She very nearly slid down the slope as she came by. It was a warning but I ignored it. The problem was that it was not a proper tyre swing, but a makeshift, made with a bicycle tyre, unsupportive, elastic, a decidedly ropey rope swing.
He flies through the air with the greatest unease,
That dodgy old man with the wobbly knees!
The path through the woods took us back down to the river, where a beautiful twisting oak tree reached out from the riverbank, sliding snakelike onto the beach.
Click on the panorama above for a closer look at the river.
Directly across from us, on the south side of the river, we could just make out the houseboats and the pub and the boatyard at Pin Mill, scene of an earlier adventure.
Down along the water’s edge we spied redshanks and oystercatchers.
Elm tree blossom.
This blackthorn blossom caught the light and shone like fibre optics.
St Peter, Levington has an authentic rural feel to it, a lovely building, beautiful outside and within. It is set on a hill above the Orwell, beside one of Suffolk’s best pubs.
The red brick tower is an early one, squatter than most thanks to a 17th century rebuilding of the top. You enter the church beneath it, the medieval south porch now being converted to a vestry. The walls are pleasingly plastered white, with red brick outlines to a range of windows of all ages.
Inside, St Peter is small and simple, white-walled under a barrel-vaulted roof. At some point, metal ties have been put in to stop the walls spreading. Brick floors enhance the simplicity of the interior, and the rustic benches face a sanctuary that is curiously flanked by 17th century panelling, brought here from Brightwell Hall.
From the church of St Peter and the Ship Inn next door we started back down the hill again, this time for a closer look at Levington Creek.
The distant cranes at the Port of Felixstowe,
clumsy imitations of the elegant little egrets in the creek down below.
There are also shelduck and curlew here, and in the mud the preserved remnants of moorings and jetties and the skeletons of abandoned sailing barges.
Then back to The Ship for tea. Their lifebelt is just the thing for a rope swing!
Walk the walk – Levington.