Foggy Old England – Blame the French

Fog over fields, Lincolnshire - Ellie Kennard 2016
Fog over fields, Lincolnshire – Ellie Kennard 2016

Whenever the subject of the English weather comes up in conversation among those who have never been there, it’s never too long before I hear about how foggy it is there. I always laugh and say that what you see on TV shouldn’t be taken too literally, as often the programs represent Victorian England, when the pollution really did bathe the country in a murky dank smog. But those days are long over and England is no more or less foggy than other countries these days… Which is a shame in one way, because I really love foggy days.

For most of our stay in England last winter, the weather was absolutely glorious – at least during the dates we had planned to be there. We had to extend our stay due to illness and as if on cue, from that day the clouds, gloom and rain descended. And the FOG! I guess I have to revise my defence of the English fog as it really was very thick at times. But then I heard on the radio that this was an illegal weather immigrant phenomenon.

BLAME THE FRENCH!
So it seems that this deliciously atmospheric pea soup was wending its way across the channel and travelling hundreds of miles up into the heart of England, from France. We were driving through the Linconshire countryside as we heard this announced on the car radio and sure enough, there it was, creeping up the country, clearly visible across the field bordering the highway we were on. We pulled over and I took that photo you see above. So it’s not really English fog at all. But it stayed with us until we left.

FAMILIAR STREETS SEEM TO BECKON TO MYSTERIOUS DESTINATIONS

Foggy Street, Dogdyke - Ellie Kennard 2016
Foggy Street, Dogdyke – Ellie Kennard 2016

We took a walk down a familiar street which seemed to dissolve into a mystery just out of sight. Without the effect lent it by the Continental mist, this modern development had no more appeal than any other housing estate, but now it seemed to draw you along to see what secrets lay just out of sight. And then suddenly there it was! Right at the end there was a very English path with a lovely little crooked gate and a stone bridge through which trickled a gentle stream. It felt like we had jumped from one world into another!

A DIFFERENT WORLD

Country walk in the fog - Ellie Kennard 2016
Country walk in the fog – Ellie Kennard 2016

DUCKS IN THE MIST

The pond by this path was filled with ducks gliding silently through the reeds. The mist made them almost ethereal, like creatures of my past reappearing to remind me of all the ponds with all the ducks that had had bread fed to them when I stood by them on misty walks with my little girl.

Ducks in the mist - Ellie Kennard 2016
Ducks in the mist – Ellie Kennard 2016

It’s true that although England is no longer (usually) shrouded in thick smog, some of my fondest memories of the landscape of that country include mist or fog. All the same, I had not expected those memories would be so poignantly brought back to me on that short trip to Linconshire.

Jennie Feeding the Duck - Steven Kennard 1980
Jennie Feeding the Duck – Steven Kennard 1980

See the full gallery of my UK photographs here: http://elliekennard.ca/ekgallery/uk/

7 Responses

  1. There is something gentle and serene about fog, whether it’s lifting from the fields or over the sea, or whether it is settling in a valley or over a village street. At the same time, it can be frightening and disorienting in certain circumstances. Regardless, I adore fog and mist. Your images prove its beauty and peacefulness from wherever it comes. A lovely post, thanks so much!

  2. I too loved the fog, although growing up in Ontario it was not something that was a common aspect of life; so days of fog were especially wonderful. I enjoyed finding a cozy corner with a good book and enjoying the muted sounds and views that it created. Like a nice cotton ball blanket. I really enjoy your posts Ellie, keep them coming!

    1. I think that’s why I love the fog, too, Ellie. In Montreal I don’t remember it at all. I especially love it for the mystery it contains for me. Perhaps I’ve read too many English mystery novels myself! Thanks for the comment. I’m having fun this summer with cooking but also being outside, biking and walking, so writing is slow to come. But it will!

  3. Great shots Ellie. I was born in Cornwall and have been back twice. It is a beautiful country (in the country). The cities I find too crowded.

    1. I agree with you Simon. But the countryside in England is just breathtaking. I miss that part. I’ve been back a few times, over the 28 years I’ve lived elsewhere. And now I’m back to (almost) where I started. 😀
      Cornwall is so far from everywhere. I think I’ve been there twice. Beautiful. But lots of developments, I seem to remember, that made the landscape a little less appealing.
      Thanks for the comment and the reshare.

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