I know, I haven't been on for a while, so I won't be surprised if no-one spots this post, at least for a while.
I have been through a dark patch, where I felt, well, hopeless, not only in regard to my walking, but everything in general.
I had one of those "moments of clarity" earlier today, where someone was moaning about having to do an activity they enjoy but on their own. The activity actually involves going somewhere with hundreds of other people, but the person in question was worried that they would feel lonely, or lost without someone they knew.
It just brought what I want to do into perspective, The Pennine way should take between 10-30 days, depending if you are gonna stroll or slog it out... Although on a sadistic note, The Pennine Way record is held Mike Hartley, who ran the route in 2 days 17 hours 20 mins (google it, I didn't believe it either the first time I heard about it - Rather you than me mate).
I have decided on a few walks next year and will get my first experience of a wild camp. I'll also be doing some easier night hikes to renew what I learnt as a child.
I was talking to someone earlier in the month about charities. We were discussing about how the amount we'll all be able (or willing) to give this coming year will reduce due to the, dare I say it - Big bad recession.
I said that i would continue to support the UK stuff, children in need, cancer charities etc but that other fund raisers that send monies overseas would not get the same off me as they have had before (please note we are not talking large sums of money). The person looked at me like I had admitted to some vile crime. Why? I know that there are needy people all over the world, But it seems that that aid usually ends up in some dictators back yard, and not to the people who actually need it. This is because of the picture the media paints for us, but I want to know the monies are going to the right place. Before getting back to the reason for my post I just want to state that I do blame the media for the state of the UK economy at present. I know things were badly managed by banks and broker's alike and that the 'bubble' would have burst eventually, but how many people would have rushed to withdraw money from the northern rock if the guy on the radio hadn't told them to? Would the Halifax still be the Halifax in a few months, if the stories about short selling hadn't been plastered everywhere, leading to common folks like us to see them as an unsafe bet for our shares? no - of course we wouldn't.. Still, at least my credit card bill will reduce, Thanks to the Bank of England for that one.
I am more resolved than ever that I will make my jaunt up the country a reality, and that the date is still set for summer 2010. I guess this means I'm gonna have to take up jogging, cos I've not managed to lose any weight at all through 2008 (although Mr Cadbury may have made a contribution there). On a sadder, more personal note. Two of my friends appear to be splitting up permanently. This makes me sad as I like them both very much. You know who you are, and I just want to say that you have to do what is right for you and your family. If anyone disagrees, just politely tell them to get knotted.
I'll See you all sooner rather than later, hopefully with some more 'hilly' material ;)