Southsea – A Fake Spring Day In Midwinter

Well, today was something a little special. Heading out through the streets of Southsea down to the front, I was suddenly struck by the brightness of the day.  Amazing uplift of spirits, and big happiness floating in the air. I don’t know if it’s just because we’ve come out of three weeks of rain and general dampness, but everything seemed clear and bright, today.The

Walking along the common and seeing the dogs running after balls, the kids playing on their bikes, families out together and the wide, wide sky above us all, I felt suddenly like a kid again.

Was this early spring? A hint of what’s to come in the next few months, like the season’s trailer: coming soon, in a sky near you…

 The Naval War Memorial on the Common cast a shadow on the grass, and I stood at its end with a childish playfulness, imagining: On a certain day at a certain time, this shadow marks the site of a buried mystery. A kiddy joy surging up inside me. Victorian white villas, the hovercraft  gliding up the beach, and suddenly a series of vistas: the Gothic fantasy of the City Museum’s turrets, the Lipstick, the Spinnaker, the old Clarence Hotel now a student building.

Then there were the details.  Starlings waiting in the little gondolas of the Balloon Wheel in the Fun Fayre to swoop on the chip shop, shadows  of pedestrians walking across a bridge at Spur Redoubt climbing out of the  sea where the bright white light was reflected on a seawall.

Then, there were flags above the Square Tower, the view of  Tower House from The Round Tower – and finally, a cup of tea with the ladies at The Slipway Cafe down at Point.

This was a magic day today.  Everything felt new. Thanks to this little bit of Pompey. You’ve raised my spirits on a winter’s day!

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