Did you know that [counter] people have been having a skeg at my little autonomous region?




Today I travelled to Lyneham to do an eleven and a half mile walk (i.e. one walk of eleven and a half miles, not one eleven mile walk and one half mile walk) with my good friends the West Wiltshire Ramblers.

The walk wasn’t the most exciting walk I’ve ever been on (too flat and fieldy) and it was a bit foggy so we probably wouldn’t have noticed even if it had been exciting but it was nice to get out for a bit of fresh air and a natter of a dull January Sunday.

Apparently, for geographic reasons, I’m affiliated to the Chippenham Group of the Ramblers’ Association but they don’t have a walk every Sunday, and it’s nice to put yerself about a bit, so I went with a couple of other turncoats from within our ranks to join this other crowd who I’d met before but couldn’t remember where and I had even greater difficulty remembering their names.

One lady, whose name I don’t think I have ever known, was telling me the last time that we walked together that she had just returned from a cycling holiday in Cuba so we had loads to talk about then, but mainly Cuba. Today she told me that she’s booked up to go soon with Exodus on their cycling trip through Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam (a trip that's very near to the top of my ever lengthening list) but before that she’s going to Israel.

Carl was a good bloke too. He'd travelled about a lot in the Royal Navy and more recently as a happy wanderer like myself. He seemed very interested in the places I had been to. Together we talked about the gradual degradation of our homeland and the unbearable Americanisation of our language and culture.

The rest of the group seem to all have plans to go to Dorset this summer.

Yesterday’s walk (yes back once again to my old favourite, Cherhill Down) was much more invigorating thanks to the sunshine, the steep hills, the magnificent views, the solace and a couple of satsumas. I enjoy a walk with a group but, miserable old git that I am, I much prefer to be on my own.

I hope you don’t think that this is just a rambling blog. I know I ramble on a bit but I don’t mean to ramble on about rambling. The main reason for all this walking malarkey at the moment is to get myself fit for my Peru trip . . . and the rest of my life. I’ve been a bit worried about my fitness during the last couple of weeks. Usually when I’m unfit I can rectify the situation easily with a bit less food and a bit more exercise. But lately, as well as a couple of days with a niggling muscular injury in my left knee, I have felt/imagined pains in my left hip which I hope to Jaysus aren’t osteoarthritis related. However, people do tell me that I look and behave younger than my years would suggest so if I do have to have a hip op I’m going to insist that it’s a hip hop hip op. And I did manage to walk approximately twenty five miles this weekend so I can’t be that old and knackered.

What I really liked about today’s walk was Peter the Leader’s joke: Did you hear about the blonde suicidal identical twin that killed her sister?


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