Transitioning from the freedom of the beautiful English Countryside. I’ve fallen in love with that too – out of love with the City.

Complete freedom is where you like, when you like with no witnesses. Unlimited options.

The locals say park up in a summer picnic spot. The formula is to walk along the bank scouting for anglers perches and find one with steps down for seclusion.

It’s surprisingly so much warmer than the London ponds. Sunday’s Ladies pond winter swimming veteran says – forget the numbers. My new friend is in Finland and he says they are swimming in the Baltic today at 0 degrees water with -1 degree air. Stop – no more numbers. Just as well as I made a bad choice with my thermometer. I’m a lazy researcher, impulsive buyer, minimalist.

There’s hardly any current and a view for miles down the river to the setting sun. I feel like I could stay for hours although I know I can’t really. My least favourite science – biology – won’t let me.

Now I’m thinking of history. A century and half ago the idea of bathing all winter in this river would have been perfectly mainstream. We think of ourselves as having more options than previous generations. It’s not true. We’ve narrowed down what is normal to less than 10% of what’s possible.

Driving is my second love. It gives me unlimited options. Cross country home through the Cotswolds harmonising ‘you’ve got to hide your love away’.

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