FEELING GREAT: Lots on your doorstep

Hartlepool Hawks cheerleading Academy members Darci Voss, 14, Caitlyn Groves, 16, Lauren May, 14, who performed at the fair.

Hartlepool Hawks cheerleading Academy members Darci Voss, 14, Caitlyn Groves, 16, Lauren May, 14, who performed at the fair.

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The temptation when you go (and then come back) from your summer holidays is to always think that where ever you’ve just been is “better than here” (as in, the town that you live in).

But the reality is that it’s no better, it’s no worse, it’s just “different”.

And because the people, the views, the weather and even the food and drink might be slightly different, it even feels better.

And there’s something in that for you to consider for these next six weeks. Doing something different really is the trick to ensuring that every day feels as good as it does when you’ve been on holiday.

Take this weekend gone in Hartlepool for example:

Wasn’t it great to see the Friends of Ward Jackson Park put on such a wonderful day for families and their children in one of the town’s nicest spots to spend time.

I enjoyed a few hours there on Sunday, and speaking to others in the park, the hot topic of conversation was “why isn’t this type of thing on more often” because when it’s on, people turn out and are really glad that they did.

And let’s look at who benefits:

For one, all of the people in Hartlepool who get to experience something different that weekend.

The people who put on the stalls, they get to raise money or awareness of whatever it is that they’re passionate about, whilst educating curious passers by and children about their “thing”.

Kids get to play on some new rides and run around (healthy) and take a break from computers.

The nice coffee shop in the park which does a wonderful job all year round gets a few extra customers on the day, and maybe a few returning ones too.

And how about the health of everyone who made a trip to the park on Sunday?

We all know that walking is one of the best exercises you can do. It’s kind your knees, easy on the hips and because pretty much everywhere in Hartlepool is flat, it’s nice for your lower back, too.

So after spending a few hours walking in the park on Sunday, I decided to continue with my walk.

I left via the Elwick Road gates and continued through the Burn Valley (with a pit stop to play on the swings with my little boy in there), continued along towards the Newburn bridge and along to Seaton front to take a stroll on the nice new promenade that the council have given us all to make use of (even stopped for fish and chips).

Then, turned around and walked right back along to the Marina. Stopped for a quick drink and to watch a few boats set sail (and the odd jet ski) before heading back home via Summerhill and to show my little boy the horses what live there.

Now, we did all of that in about six hours.

And I can safely say it was one of the nicest days that I’ve had in years and was a timely reminder with the summer holidays upon us that you don’t have to jump on a plane, or even hop in a car, to find something different to enjoy.

All of these things are right on your doorstep and if you use all these places wisely, you can even top up your tan AND your health account at the same time. Enjoy ;-)