Five walks revisited

I once met a very, very old man in Suffolk who had gone beagling with Orwell, a rather specialized form of walking, admittedly. (source)

Back in March 2014 I blogged about the repertoire of five walks me and the beags did on weekdays, with the aim of documenting them in detail in due course. At that point the boys were six and four, well up for at least an hour and a half of beagling. Sadly, we recently lost them both, but our new puppy is now six months old and ready to extend himself a bit more. It’s time to revisit our five walks.

The initial forays were made with beagle nr 1 on his own. We soon discovered that far from being a bland and boring suburb Hvidovre had a variety, as well as some interesting quirks, once you take the trouble to look under the surface. We got to know our patch pretty well, although ground covered shrank somewhat with the arrival of beagle nr 2 – sniffing time seemed to double at least. Eventually our routes became so familiar that Osc could probably have taken himself for walks, and during the three months he was back as solo beagle he designed our walks.

It’s a joy to watch Lubo finding the nooks Oscar or Mylo liked to linger at, as well as discovering new spots. Finally a positive experience after all the tears, a reminder of the simple rewards of an everyday walk, flaneurie with a canine connoisseur.

To help me get back into the blogging habit rather than trying to document the five routes as a whole I’ll aim for a 500 word highlight per week, mirroring Lubo’s experiences. Here’s an overview of what’s out there:

  • Monday: Modernist Hvidovre, with social housing from the 1920s to the 1950s, including one of Denmark’s 10 best, a 1960s graveyard, an industrial zone and a town hall
  • Tuesday: Friheden, an area conceived by the council as its southern centre but today rather lacking in identity, despite much lost heritage, including two burial mounds and an historic pear tree
  • Wednesday: through Hvidovre’s ‘Greek quarter’, seemingly laid out by an idle planner with a protractor, and across the old communal border to Avedøre, dominated by the Corb-style Store Hus; see The last summerhouse
  • Thursday: Risbjergkvarter, the story of a Danish suburb from the turn of the last century to the present day, and Vigerslevpark, a 4km ribbon park following Harrestrup Å, Greater Copenhagen’s very own lost river; see Stadsrenden
  • Friday: Hvidovre is by the sea, of sorts, and once offered pilotage services into Copenhagen as well as an active bathing culture in the 1930s; today there is a bird reserve, a pocket-sized beach and a marina

Lubo at six months: those legs are made for walking


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