London Loop – section 16

After the dire warnings on Monday from the UK Government’s Chief Medical Adviser and Chief Scientific Adviser, I was expecting the Government to announce a second national lockdown on Tuesday evening.

With that in mind, and because it was the last day of summer, a friend and I decided to embark on the 242 km London Loop. The Transport for London web site has conveniently broken the walk into twenty-four sections. We started with section 16, the closest to us.

The route from Elstree and Borehamwood to Cockfosters was a relaxing 17 km walk on a gloriously sunny day, which I later learnt was our autumn equinox. That may have explained why the light was especially good.

The walk starts in what was the home of the British film industry. Classics such as 2001: A Space Odyssey, Star Wars, and the Indiana Jones films were made here. Now Strictly Come Dancing and Pointless are recorded at the studios.

There’s some interesting housing at the Elstree end (we must have walked through a posh area) and some picturesque rolling hills before joining the beginning of the Dollis Valley Greenwalk, one of the hidden delights of North London. Just after King George’s Fields, the London Loop splits from the Greenwalk and goes through the deceptively named but beautiful Monken Hadley Common, which accompanies you to Cockfosters. If you have time at the end, Trent Park is worth exploring.

When I got home after the walk, I was overjoyed to hear that there would be no second national lockdown. The Government’s advisers had been unnecessarily pessimistic during their press conference on Monday.

Unbeknown to the advisers, the Government had struck a deal with the coronavirus. In summary, humans will occupy places like shops, restaurants, pubs, social clubs, casinos, bowling alleys, and bingo halls between 5am and 10pm. By 10pm, the humans will vacate the pubs, etc in an orderly fashion. The virus has agreed to march into the buildings at 10pm precisely and remain until 5am. At which time, humans will return for the daytime shift, and so on. It’s all very clever.

I don’t know if the Government told the virus that no humans would actually be in these establishments when the virus would be flexing its muscles. It’s quite devious if they didn’t because the virus apparently needs humans to survive. Regardless, I hope the virus remembers the list and sticks to its end of the bargain. The list is quite long and I’m having trouble remembering it already.

With this settlement now negotiated for the next six months, I’m much more optimistic about the post-Brexit trade negotiations.

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