Outside places in Bristol for the Socially Anxious and Misanthropic

Discussion in 'Bristol and South West' started by Skin1, Jan 9, 2019.

  1. Skin1

    Skin1 Well-Known Member

    Slightly terrified to start a thread on Urban75. I used to post here Millenia ago, back in the days when I resided at 'Stab Towers'
    I have a 'Generalised Anxiety Disorder' and I am very interested in the concept of seclusion and contemplation in Public Spaces. In the City, but not subsumed by its occupants and visitors.
    Basically, avoiding unwanted social interaction and spaces that offer this..
    My expertise & interest is in Central Bristol. The only places I can really think of where the Madding Crowd can be ducked and avoided, whilst still being 'Outside' and not hiding in a box with a periscope, are.
    (1) The stones at the end of the small island under the Plimsoll Swing Bridge. Looking onto the River Avon.
    (2) The seat under the tree looking up toward the Cabot Tower. Although in the last year or so they have put an intrusive seat nearly opposite. So that place is ruined. I find being contemplated exhausting. Its a disorder - it's not logical. People most likely aren't even noticing me. But on some quantum level, my peace is shattered by facing people. When seeking a quiet refuge. For a rest. For a think.
    (3) The seat with the bushes behind it facing the clearing at the top of the junction of Bridge Valley Road and Ladies Mile. It may be called 'Fairy Land' and not without reason. Love that space.
    Perhaps also a distant seat by a copse deep inside Ashton Court and another lower down in Ashton Court where you can see oncoming Hoomans and flee as they approach..
    Apart from that, the City design seems to be completely run upon the assumption that everyone is mad keen for interaction and socialisation.
    They constantly put park benches on paths. Seldom off them. They even put them facing each other like in Castle Park behind St Peter's Church. Not to mention the deliberate and uncomfortable shape of the seats. Probably to try and detract from people getting too comfortable and leaping off the Capitalist Treadmill.
    This perhaps comes across as a bit Fruitloopy. But this is a serious issue for those of us who wish there were designs in the urban landscape that allowed people to be both present but removed (for a while) from the chaotic energetic rhythms that Cities offer.
    Can anyone think of any other places of seclusion within Bristol City?
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2019
  2. Edie

    Edie Well-Known Member

    It’s been a long time since I lived in Bristol so I can’t help with suggestions. But that’s an interesting post, and welcome back :)
    marty21 and Skin1 like this.
  3. BristolEcho

    BristolEcho Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure, but maybe troopers hill? It's popular with dog walkers but it always feels sparse up there. I'm not sure if there is a bench off the pathways.

    Also I was wondering about St Mary Radcliffe garden? Busy during school lunch probably, but it seems nice and quiet in the day. I've not actually been in but I imagine it to be somewhere that would have a peaceful spot.

    It's a good point not thought about it before. Will have think.
    Skin1 likes this.
  4. wiskey

    wiskey Albatross Admirer

    Hello skin.

    Central Bristol is a massively congested place and yet it somehow doesn't have the anonymity of central London.

    I don't know where is a good place to just be I'm afraid.
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2019
    Skin1 likes this.
  5. brizzledude

    brizzledude Member

    I surprised myself with how much I identified with in the OP.

    Have you been to Perrets Park in Knowle (maybe not central Bristol I admit, but only 25-30 mins walk from town)? I live nearby and love the place. Stunning views across the city and, though there are benches along the paths (which I avoid), there are also a fair few placed such that you are unlikely to have anyone come too close to you, inquisitive dogs and the occasional errant child excepted. Worth a visit if you are in the area.
    BristolEcho likes this.
  6. farmerbarleymow

    farmerbarleymow Seagull + Chips = Happy Seagull

    Welcome back. Hope you find a suitable spot for contemplation.
    marty21 and Skin1 like this.
  7. Skin1

    Skin1 Well-Known Member

    I do know Perrets Park. It is lovely, Quite steep as I recall, in places. Good to know there are other benches that can be sat on without uinvited human interraction/socialisation.. I will check the place out.
  8. Skin1

    Skin1 Well-Known Member

    Thanks, FBM.. :)
  9. Skin1

    Skin1 Well-Known Member

    Hello Wiskey,
    I am actually possibly/probably/maybe/definitely swapping my flat for one in central-ish London. I have a flat that likes mine and I like theirs..
    I actually like the indifference of London. My social phobia/agorphobia, GAD is so deeply routed in my personality that I might as well 'Feel The Fear' and move to a City I find absolutely thrilling. Rather than tread these streets of lifelong association. It could be the best or worst thing I ever did. But I can't stay here!
    High Voltage and Chilli.s like this.
  10. Skin1

    Skin1 Well-Known Member

    St Mary Redcliffe Gardens (as graveyards are now refered LOL) is too busy a throughfare, and no where to really hide or sit. But a beautiful place! I was in the church only the other day. :)
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
  11. Supine

    Supine Rough Like Badger

    Clifton Observatory just north of the suspension bridge. You can sit on the cliff looking at birds flying by. Not a soul to be seen.
  12. Skin1

    Skin1 Well-Known Member

    Can be a bit 'Peopley' the approach paths.
    I think I know the lower path that you mean..Must investigate. Thank you. In my youth (and until about ten years ago) I was a frequent nocturnal visitor to those parts! If Paths could talk!!
  13. rubbershoes

    rubbershoes not the only raver in the village

    Can't help you with any suggestions but welcome back
    Skin1 likes this.
  14. Chilli.s

    Chilli.s changed the little words

    That's a very likeable post and quite inspiring too. Well done and best of luck, how exciting.
  15. Skin1

    Skin1 Well-Known Member

    Thank you. I was (and am still) feeling inspired and ready for pastures new. Unfortunately (since a message earlier today) a second possible swap is now looking shakey! (I waited several months for a swap to Holborn who in the end withdrew, for understandable reasons) I wonder if anyone actually ever really does swap? Or whether it is one of those Urban Myths? People just dangle their flats at you and then when you are on the hook they let you wriggle about and then snip the string. I have decided to be less proactive and allow the indifferent universe to move its own cogs and machienations. I'm always trying to force the imposssible into the probable with very little success.
    Back to seats in cities for those who want to be 'A Loan' . Another is just before the Skater Park around the War Memorial on the City Centre. The end two seats are not too facing of those opposite! I was sat on one earlier in a bit of a Quiver as my anxiety was a bit volcanic.
    Chilli.s likes this.
  16. xenon

    xenon A move in any direction

    Hello Skin. :)

    Yeah people do actually swap. Well my mate's just swapped his council / HA flat within Bristol.

    I was going to say the herb garden at the cathedral but actually I think it gets pretty busy in there, especially round lunch time.
    Skin1 likes this.
  17. Skin1

    Skin1 Well-Known Member

    That is a relief to know. I feel a little more hopeful that I may find a swap that happens.. The hope at present measurable on the quantum level more than the Richter Scale.

    The Herb Garden (with added subtaranean Skeletons) is a favourite of mine, when I am with a friend. Can't sit there alone. I get too self concious and panicky. It is a beautiful space. friendly cafe staff. Perhaps more beautiful becasue it is a place of a Millenia? of contemplation and prayer? (do these energies stiuck to walls and spaces? Maybe!) Probably a Pagan site before that. It can be a bit 'peopley' but certain seats and bushage detract from unwanted close hoofage! There are a couple of memorable graves, one amuses, the other has an inscription which moves me. One says soemthing like 'May they all be one' (with a Bishops Crook on it) and I imagine they probably were/are. Another is a beautiful poetic saying which typically now escapes me. Something like ' We loved, We are loved, We shall love....' it isn't that(I don't think), but it is one of those lovely phrases that give a slight tingle at the sheer beauty of the sentiment.. I shall traverse the Cathedral tomorrow and re-read the grave inscription.
    chainsawjob and xenon like this.
  18. xenon

    xenon A move in any direction

    I've only sat in their a couple of times if I'm honest. For me, I think it's the sound, lack of and smell. There are a few spots that transport you out of the city. Down by the 7 Stars, even though you're not that far from the traffic of Victoria street, it sort of receeds and with the mossy smell of the brickwork you can feel like you're elsewhere. Not gone back in time exactly but like stepped through a vale... Sort of. Well you know what I mean.
    chainsawjob and Skin1 like this.
  19. marty21

    marty21 One on one? You're crazy.

    I work in Social Housing and have been involved in way more than 100 mutual exchanges over the years (involved as a Housing Officer, not participant)
    Skin1 likes this.
  20. Idaho

    Idaho blah blah blah

    Welcome back Skin :)
    Skin1 likes this.
  21. Skin1

    Skin1 Well-Known Member

    That is good to hear. I have almost lost faith in the process. So many people seem to have been on the Swap Site for years. Earlier today, unexpectedly, I had a text message saying that the tennant of the swap I was hoping for has decided to choose another property. It was a jolt, as he was supposed to be visiting to do measuring on Wednesday. So, an entire time line just evaporated. A life in London went from solid to translucent, then fell away into a leadened grief and hollow, emptiness! I've recovered a bit now. Nearly managed a cry but couldn't quite tip the scales into 'wailing self pity' This is the second time (The previous swappee became too ill to move) I have dreamt myself into a false future. Wandered up and down Google earth, Zoomed in and out, visited the areas. Researched. Imagined so hard it became real, the streets, the plans, the stratagies (I experience G.A.D - so the whole thing is a huge adventure in courage). There have been one or two Swappees who I think dangle their properties on the site like succulent teases. One visited and I never heard back from her. I don't believe that fate holds out better things after dissapointment. There are no great Master Plans, no reassuring plataitudes to sweep away the shattered future. So. I'm going to totally 'White Wash ' all the walls. Get good photographs of the rooms. Get rid of my gothic pictures. Show the place as it is, quirky, fabulous, light airy. With a store room!!! The place is amazing! I've been here nearly 14 years and I still go 'Wow' occasionally. A Maisonette on two levels with a shared Garden in a period property two streets above 'Stab Towers' Ok. Better stop the promoting as I don't want to be banned/slapped, admonished. It is good to be back on Urban after such a long time...

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