The Winchester

"Not all those who wander are lost" – Tolkien

The Polski Church

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July 2011

My Town

It was scaffolding again. The Polish church in Reading  had received a grant for a quarter of a million quid because bits of the steeple had started to fall off, so Jerzy Januszkiewicz had got his mates round to put up a big climbing frame up. We’d been up onto this church before, but as the scaff had only gone to the roof, the view was half as good back a year ago. I’ve been watching this for a couple of weeks, as the frame grew quickly at first, then agonisingly slowly. We were bored, so Gary came round and we ended up going up it before it was finished. Weak shit eh?

The views were alright. we’ve been spoilt in London and Paris, where national landmarks can be seen from close and afar. The heights are often much more impressive – we both admitted we wouldn’t have bothered if this hadn’t been in Reading, where the best view is of the Blade, the baby ‘scraper that we never got round to doing, mainly because a lanky Nigerian kept telling us to leave when we turned up, calling a police car once from which we scuttled away from through the Abbey ruins. Somebody was carted off to the local mental hospital when he went up top and sat on the crane for 5 hours, only coming down at sunset. Only a nutter would do that anyway, right?

Reading’s our town. This is the hospital  I went to when I broke my hand and wrist, chasing adrenaline doing some of these faddish ‘extreme sports’. And people say that exploring is dangerous? I live on one of the roads in one of these shots, and all the tall buildings in the pictures have been done at some point by any of myself, Gary and Dan.

My Hospital

It’s times like these where I wish I was a Londoner, with the dearth of opportunities to go sub and sous. The heights of London give some of the best views in the world, but the heights of Reading are my heights.

It’s all relative really, what can be achieved. I love Reading, it’s where I’ve turned from a child into an adult, but in a way, it’s holding me back. Every trip to London costs me money and my bank account figure starts with a minus more often than a plus. It doesn’t stop me though, somehow. This yearning to push on and explore everything is challenged by the mature desires to be the adult I am, going to bed at a sensible time so I can do my job in the morning. I’ve had trips where I’ve got back at 4am, crawling into the office in the morning like a zombie. It’s always worth it.

My Friend.

Nights like this remind me where we all came from. Everybody from OT to, OtterDs to Siologen will have had their first trip out, that moment when they said to themselves, “fuck the rules, I’m gonna see what it likes to climb that thing/going down that drain/get into that building”. Anybody could have done this, it was totally unchallenged. Some student returning from a night out watched us climb down the scaffolding at the bottom and hop off and away; they just carried on walking. Why would they care? This is just what me and Gary do.

(All City Reading baby!)

Written by Winch

July 19th, 2011 at 9:54 am

Posted in Infrastructure/construction

Tagged with Gary

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