Christmas is a time for family and friends, for sharing and appreciating. It can be magical. It can also be stressful and hard work. Getting together and going for a walk is just the perfect de-stress.
On our way to Hackney City Farm, we passed through Broadway Market Green, a secret spot between Duncan Road and Jackman Street, for a swing on the swings. At the farm, we said hello to the chickens, pigs, goats and lone donkey. There was even an escaped goat! Everyone was on sharp look out for the hungry troll, as we’d heard this troll was rather partial to eating Billy goats for dinner!
Nestled down the left side of the farm is a woodland settlement with tree stumps, an extra-terrestrial looking wind energy contraption and a giant wooden xylophone strung up between two trees! We’re excited to make our own xylophone next year at Green Farm Kent for Family Camping.
We practiced our fox walk; creeping slowly and silently through the woodland paths so as not to disturb the chubby squirrels foraging in the undergrowth. We debated heavily whether or not a frog lived in the pond. More children, also walking with their families, joined the debate.
The walk was drawing to an end, with dusk rolling in. We began to make our way back to Netil Market for a fire and marshmallows, when some of the children spotted the empty BMX track. It was too much of an opportunity to resist. We piled in and went hurtling along the rolling track. Up and down. Racing one another. Younger children held hands with older children and parents, their feet brushing the ground. Screams echoed around the track. Children ran round and round and round before collapsing on the floor in exhaustion. This mischievous takeover of the BMX track was my favourite part of the walk. Everyone was playing. The game had no rules!
Back at camp, we were greeted with a roaring fire and our cosy Outdoor People shop. We sipped mulled apple juice and melted marshmallows over the fire. It’s a lovely feeling to come together around a fire and appreciate the experiences we'd shared, both that afternoon and over the year. One parent said, “I always value the community atmosphere and find it motivating to be in a group. I like watching my kids having fun, enjoying fresh air and exercising.”