Having spent several years travelling around the world, living in far reaching destinations and sampling differing cultures and lifestyles, I am now planning my next major travel adventure.
Starting on June 25th 2011 my wife and I will walk from Land's End at the south-western tip of England to John O'Groats, located at the north-eastern tip of Scotland. This is a 1200 mile walk and will take approximately three months to complete. This walk will be for charity and we will be raising money for the charity Association for International Cancer Research (AICR) (http://www.aicr.org.uk
). This charity donates money to cancer research globally.
I had originally planned to travel around the world without flying. After making it as far as Singapore from England overland, I decided the £100-150 per person per day to continue onwards via cargo ship was money better spent on other endeavours. With recent deaths in our family from cancer we thought a sponsored walk to raise money for such a good cause would be more rewarding.
I will be keeping a diary of this walk on TravelBlog, although there might be a time delay due to limited internet access. If you want to follow our adventure, please subscribe to my blog or recommend it. Similarly you can follow my wife and I on Twitter (@Aand C_walk_GB).
If you feel inspired or would like to donate to this worthy cause, please visit: http://www.justgiving.com/Adrian-and-Candace
After starting a new job, moving to London and living without Internet for a month (why it takes a month to get internet connection in one of the world's most developed countries I'll never know!), I've fallen behind with my blog writing. Hopefully that will change in the next few weeks.
December 8th 2012
You may not know this, but I have a strange fascination with running. It's got nothing to do with using copious amounts of vaseline and wearing skimpy shorts either. Travel will always be that first special love, the one that took away my innocence, but now that I've returned to the joys of full time employment, it's this running malarchy that has stolen my affections. Maybe I'm just on the rebound? Along with 1700 other 'athletes' I recently entered a competition in Runners World magazine for 4 months of professional training, entry to the Paris Marathon and the chance for Asics and Runners World to show the world how great they are at making a nobody like me run like a Kenyan. Out of this 1700 that entered, I am now down to the final 4 ... read more
July 5th 2011
Pieces of soggy rabbit carcass splattered my face for the umpteenth time. My skin was drenched to the bone and my waterlogged shoes squelched with every step I made. Car horns beeped. When I raised my head to see why they were honking , I was met with an array of abusive hand gestures. Other vehicles purposefully drove towards me travelling at eighty miles an hour. I instinctively jumped further into the uneven grass verge. I tripped often, spraining my ankles. The weight from my backpack pushed my face into the wet grass, rotting roadkill and other rubbish. I stumbled, struggling to return to my feet. Shivering miserably, I wished I was anywhere but here. The rain was relentless. Spray from passing vehicles kept visibility on the treacherous A30 to a minimum. These weren't safe conditions ... read more
July 4th 2011
The sweet, sickly smell of decomposition made me gag. Its pungency hung thick in the air. There was no escaping it. To make matters worse, the aroma came from decaying human flesh, the human flesh of my wife. It's a topic of conversation I never envisaged having. "Excuse me love, but I believe your foot is slowly rotting away." We both knew it was happening. We both hoped by ignoring the issue, it would just disappear. As to be expected, it hadn't. Ever since the second day of our 1160 mile charity walk form Lands End to John o'Groats, my wife had been inundated with blister issues. Covering her feet with blister plasters seemed to have corrected the problems. But now taking the plasters off for the first time seven days later, I knew they were ... read more
July 3rd 2011
The sound was unmistakeable. Heaving, followed by a short silence, then the distinct splattering of vomit on grass. I doubted it was morning sickness my pregnant camping neighbour was suffering from. The empty cans of Stella strewn around the entrance to her camper van were a sure giveaway. As we started packing our tent away, I glared across at her with disdain. She didn't see me. On all fours, she was wiping away the last stringy contents of her stomach that were hanging from her chin. I was in a terrible mood. The drunken shenanigans of my expectant neighbour actually had very little to do with my current disposition. Even without her there I would have been feeling the same. The side of my tent had been used throughout the night as a rodent super-highway, and ... read more
July 2nd 2011
"Hey rambler......you're a fucking dick." I turned around to see a group of sneering, drunk youths. It wasn't even 10am and it was obvious those shouting the abuse had been up all night. I ignored them and kept walking. There was no point in saying anything. It was obvious they were looking for a confrontation. It was even more apparent that I would've been on the end of a serious beating if I'd even made eye contact. Ramblers. Hikers. Walkers. They don't have the best of reputations. I've never considered myself to be one, but it seems attempting any journey wearing hiking shoes and carrying a backpack classifies you in this category. Like being a bird-watcher, train-spotter or even a runner, this leads to being singled out for high levels of ridicule for no particular reason. ... read more
June 30th 2011
It's a place you either love or hate. There's been a lot of negative publicity surrounding Newquay in recent months. Intoxicated teenagers passed out in street gutters. Violence from binge-drinking stag parties. Locals awakening to pavements covered in vomit and fast food, both of which are happily gobbled up by bullish, intimidating seagulls. This certainly isn't the best advert for Cornish tourism. For me though Newquay, the self-proclaimed surfing capital of Britain, holds plenty of good memories and you can't help but think much of the negative publicity has been somewhat sensationalised. Many of the current 'problems' have been happening for years and although I agree some small pockets of behaviour could be classed as anti-sociable, without these sub-groups of tourists, unemployment and economic hardships in the area would be much higher. Newquay today... read more
June 29th 2011
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It's a bit of a mouthful. Ask anybody from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales what country they're from and I'm sure most would never answer United Kingdom or Great Britain. Like being labelled European or North American, it dilutes a person's cultural identity into something more generic. I'm not at all surprised by this. The prestige and pride of being English, Welsh, Scottish or Irish will never be compromised and neither should it be. I'm proud to say I'm English. I have national pride, even if at times it's misinformed and misplaced. What I wasn't expecting before starting this 1160 mile charity walk from Lands End to John o'Groats to raise money for Association for International Cancer Research would be the high levels of regional pride and ... read more
June 28th 2011
Confidence. It's a funny thing. One moment you can be riding the crest of a wave, feeling unbeatable and exuding unbelievable self-belief. The next, after the smallest of mishaps or setbacks, those niggling self-doubts start to snowball out of control like a swine flu epidemic. Before you know it you're questioning your own ability to put one foot in front of the other, impossible to climb out of the bottomless pit of negativity, despair and depression. Today's walk from Phillack to Portreath followed this line of thought to a tee. After yesterday's short hike along easy pavements, followed by an over-indulgence on pasties and pints, we woke feeling like we could take on the world. A bacon and sausage bap, the breakfast of kings, only added to our supreme confidence levels. From our campsite, situated on ... read more
June 27th 2011
Truly hideous! My face couldn't hide my initial reaction. I would never ever use the words 'hideous' and 'my wife' in the same sentence under normal circumstances, but taking a look at her feet, there really wasn't a better word to describe them. By some small miracle, I was hoping the blisters and missing segments of skin had miraculously replenished and repaired themselves. They hadn't. They looked exactly the same as they did the previous evening after the gruelling thirteen mile coastal walk from Pendeen. So disgusting, it was hard to look at them for more than a few seconds without feeling nauseated. I tried to offer words of encouragement and inspiration, but we both knew they were lacking any honesty. Trying to be the doting husband, I walked the twenty minutes in to St. Ives, ... read more
June 26th 2011
"Why are you so obese? You really are obese!" These words were still raw. I admit to carrying a little puppy fat, too much cheap Asian street food earlier in the year being the culprit. But obese? Surely not. But these inquisitive words from a family member had hit a nerve. I was hoping that the upcoming challenge of walking 15 miles a day for three solid months would help send these words straight back in the direction they came from. As dawn broke on day two of our 1160 mile charity walk from Lands End to John o'Groats, the back spasms and stiff hamstrings filled me with dread. Our tent, saturated from condensation on the inside and out, was packed away in a soggy mess. Not in any way was I enthusiastic about spending another ... read more