full list

"End to End via the Margins"
-the diary of a walk.


The Youth Hostel at Kirk Yetholm was an excellent, friendly place to stay, although if I'd known how exuberant the birds were going to be with their dawn chorus, I'd have shut the window before I went to sleep. It was quiet, and I'd been lucky enough to be in a room with no-one else in it. The Kirk in Yetholm chimed the hours in a plain, Presbyterian kind of way, far better than all that unnecessary bingbonging you get south of the border. (Although I wouldn't rule out the possibility of more bingbonging to come as I get further into Scotland.)

The walk started into the gently rolling landscape, the distant green hillsides dotted with sheep like white aphids. These days, when I walk the roads I'm not so fussy about facing the oncoming traffic as I ought to be. I have a pretty good idea what's going on anyway, and sometimes my feet just need the opposite camber.

It was a simple morning walk, to the house of friends in Kelso where I was to stay. Bill came to join me and walked most of the way. He offered me plenty of encouragement, from the viewpoint of one who had walked the Pilgrimage Against Poverty, from Iona to London.

It appears that a lot of the arable farming around here is done by contractors. Bill also said they're talking of bringing the railway back. If I had a hot dinner for everyone who's said that to me, I'd be happy. We were there before midday.

Once again, I've been made welcome. They looked after me and allowed me to spend the rest of the day practically as I pleased;- bathing, getting the air to my toes, eating, watching the rain outside the window, sitting by the fire looking at maps and dreaming of what lay ahead.

By the way, as I sat eating lemon drizzle cake, I wondered what other food was named after precipitation... crunchy granary graupel bread? sleet treats? Suggestions?

Pictures from today...
Giant fungus
Holy God, we thank you for our Sabbaths,
chances to rest.
Help us keep the Sabbath holy,
so that no-one on the face of the earth
is deprived of chances to rest,
not housewives and husbands,
not shop workers,
not bar staff,
not farmers,
not plantation workers,
not junior doctors,
not managers,
not anyone
goes without a rest.
© Bob Warwicker. The words here may be reproduced freely, but not for gain, or without attribution. All alterations must have the permission of the author.