I’m in Brighton at the minute, a city renowned for being one of the cultural hubs of England, a city where anything goes, where no-one cares who you are or what you do.
So, with the sea air in my nostrils and a spring in my step, I got up at the ridiculously early hour of 6am and went for a run to a nudist beach, as you do.
Well, that wasn’t my intention, but that’s where I ended up. My plan was to run from my hotel to the marina, little did I know where it’d take me!
Coming out of the hotel, I have two options – turn left towards the marina or turn right towards the Pier. I’ll do the Pier run some other morning before I go home but, for today, it was the marina, as much to explore what’s up there as to go somewhere different … I’d walked around the Pier area yesterday.
Rather fittingly, no sooner had I crossed the road to get onto the seafront I ran into a statue of Steve Ovett, a renowned son of Brighton and former Olympic gold medal winner, world record holder and all-round decent runner 😉 …… well, I didn’t quite ‘run’ into it – that would have been silly – but I had literally only gone a few yards when I saw it.
After stopping for a quick pic, I headed onwards towards the marina – or where I thought the marina was, I was running on instinct – and immediately encountered lots of other runners. That was brilliant. I love that. Normally, at home, it’s just me out and about on my own, but this morning there seemed to be someone every 30 seconds or so. Fantastic!
On I went before, much to my surprise, I spotted the sign for the naturist beach. The what now? I’m a simple country boy from County Antrim, I know not of such things!
The beach seems to be concealed behind a mound to keep it from view but could I resist a wee run up the pebbles to the boundary signs to see what I could see? Of course I bloody well couldn’t!!!!!!
Much to my relief (I think!) it was deserted …. well, what would you expect at that time in the morning? I know it was bright and sunny but even the most foolhardy of naturists would be mad to get their bits out that early!
Onwards, however, to the marina. As you might expect, it was full of boats and yachts and so on. The more I ran around it, the poorer I felt. This really is a place for the rich, famous and well off to hang out, not a street urchin like me!
After a quick lap of a bit of the marina I turned to come back and spotted, along the boardwalk, the Brighton Walk of Fame, much like the famous one in Hollywood. All the Brighton greats were there ….. Winston Churchill, Graham Greene, Kevin Rowland, Steve Ovett, Abba.
Wait! What? Abba? Honest, there’s a plaque there to Abba, that well known Brighton band. A quick search later showed they won the Eurovision Song Contest in the Brighton Dome in 1974, so I suppose they count.
Anyway, I turned back for my hotel, past the naturist beach again but I couldn’t resist stopping for a quick selfie. Thankfully, the area was still suffering from a lack of human bits so I did my business (the pic, the pic!!!!) and moved swiftly on before I was spotted.
An altogether pleasant wee morning run. I’ll do the Pier run later this week, I’m looking forward to it already.