I am sitting in the tiny courtyard of my Bath hotel. My cigar is down to a nub. Oddly, the cry of seagulls cuts through the now foreign and otherwise deafening electric drone of the building’s utilities machinery.
Not more than two hours ago, I bid farewell to Bart and Ronny. If either of you end up reading this, I want to say again, thank you for your companionship. I hope that our paths cross again. I could not have asked for better company.
It’s time to reflect on my adventure.
Here are the cold hard facts:
- Days walking: 7
- Miles traversed: 102 plus a few lost and not so lost wanderings
- Elevation gain: 12,000 + feet
- Days with rain: 2
- Heart palpitating sunsets: 2
- Pubs visited: 22
- Pints of real ale consumed: 38
- Varieties of real ale consumed: 35
- Cigars smoked: 7
- Ounces of medicinally applied whiskey: 7
- Pointless alliterative phrases penned: 11
- Friends made: 2
- Episodes of joyfully induced tears: 3
- Randy Newman songs spontaneously hummed or sung: too many to count
Fascinating foot facts (make that 12 pointless alliterative phrases penned):
- Blisters: 3
- Sacrificed toenails: 1
- Incidents of medical treatments applied: 14
There is no way to articulate what this trip has meant to me. I wrote in my initial post that I viewed this adventure as “sustenance for my metaphysical me,” and that’s exactly what it was. I can’t, in good conscience, characterize it as “recharging the batteries” or by employing some other trite phrase. This was something I dreamt about for half my life and my entire adult life. I was afraid it wouldn’t deliver. But it did.
Thank you all for sharing in my adventure. I know there are a number of you who took more than a mild interest in this enterprise. I hope with all sincerity that each of you can identify your own Cotswold constitutional and have the courage to take the chance to be enchanted.
I am now, and will forever be, the Pedestrian.
THE LAST drops of the thundershower had hardly ceased falling when the Pedestrian stuffed his map into his pocket, settled his pack more comfortably on his tired shoulders, and stepped out from the shelter of a large chestnut tree into the middle of the road. A violent yellow sunset was pouring through a rift in the clouds to westward, but straight ahead over the hills the sky was the colour of dark slate. Every tree and blade of grass was dripping, and the road shone like a river.
Those of you who have peppered me with questions on facebook, please send me direct messages if you are still interested in the particulars of the trip. This, of course, will not be the last of my entries here. I still have a few more days to explore England and will be in Copenhagen for a few days. Stay tuned.