Country Walking Magazine (UK) - - News - Guy Proc­ter, Editor

Iused to won­der what would have to hap­pen to me to be­come the em­bar­rass­ment to my chil­dren I was des­tined to be. Would I overnight be­come a noisy sender-back of food in restau­rants? De­velop a con­sum­ing in­ter­est in na­tur­ism? Now I know. I’ve be­come over­friendly. I say hello to peo­ple who’d prob­a­bly rather no­tot have had to take their ear­phones out. And I’m su­per de­lighted to help peo­ple who seem to be look­ing at their map too long. It started to be­come a prob­lem when we be­gan #walk1000miles, our cam­paign to en­cour­age peo­ple to walk an av­er­age of 2.74 miles a day. I just don’t think it’s pos­si­ble to be part of this gang of now 27,000 walk­ers, and not be­come ter­ri­bly fond of the hu­man an­i­mal – its ca­pac­ity for car­ing, its de­light in oth­ers’ suc­cesses and em­pa­thy for oth­ers’ tri­als; its com­mon bond of frailty and friend­li­ness. Take Dianne from Scot­land and Su­san from Canada, pic­tured above while Dianne was on hol­i­day. “The co­in­ci­dence is in­cred­i­ble” she says. “Su­san is 60, I’m 61; her walk­ing buddy is called Diane, mine is called Sue; we both took up walk­ing to help with our weight loss, are both re­tired, met through the chal­lenge and are now ob­sessed with walk­ing. Yes­ter­day we walked through Nose Hill Park in Cal­gary, and were as­ton­ished we’d done nine miles when we got back as we’d blethered so much we never no­ticed the time go by. Such an ex­cit­ing day.” Don’t you just love that? And I know that makes me em­bar­rass­ing. But given the choice be­tween this and na­tur­ism? You don’t have to an­swer right away, kids.

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