We have now reached the penultimate numbered week and the not-insignificant milestone of 750 miles (ish). All the adventures you’ve read about in these blogs and watched here are behind us and something is beginning to happen. Having previously lived in Wales for half a decade and spent time along the south coast, place names on signs are now more frequently familiar to me from my own life, no longer only from general knowledge or the very elaborate spreadsheet that has been our daily bible for this project.
I’ve passed through towns and villages I spent years visiting in the past with friends, family and loved ones, seeing them from a totally different perspective, my feet guiding me from one blue Llywbr Arfordir Cymru sign to the next, rather than a car between road signs. I travelled down paths I never noticed, so close to places I frequented.
Seth too was on charted ground today, repeating a section of a walk he did with a friend as training for this project earlier in the summer. We would round a corner and come across spots where he’d been camping down the Gower one time, or see through the window of a cosy pub that once offered him rest and beer after a tough day. Pump clips have also been an indicator of our geographical progress, as we pass into the radii of different breweries, often preceding, appearing throughout, and extending beyond the counties or regions that do many of them are named after.
Wildlife encounters haven’t stopped either. A small herd of Gower ponies were very curious, a foal hiding behind its mother as another came and investigated my hand with its velvety soft nose. On the beach at Broughton Bay we saw a dead dogfish. Barrel jellyfish are consistently washed up on the sand. A very aggressive sheep charged us at Weobly Castle (as in like a rhino, he wasn’t working as a ticket clerk for Cadw). The odd red kite has soared overhead, and our old companions of choughs, egrets and cormorants have followed us round for nearly 2 months now.
Post-project planning has already begun. Bookings for trains and haircuts and the like in the so-called ‘real world’ have been made. Arrangements for beds and lifts in this mythical month of ‘November’ that we’ve heard exists are now in place. More friends are planning to join for gigs and walks in this upcoming final stretch. Feelings are mixed; there’s exciting things to come at the end, like what promises to be a pretty epic final gig, but equally, the condition of Achilles tendons and shoelaces and bags aside, I don’t think any of us really want this adventure to end.
c.150 miles to go. Dyfalbarhad.