10/08/12 Goodbye to the Highlands.

10/08/12 Goodbye to the Highlands.
Now this feels a little weird – all the walking I’ve done for quite some time has been in the stunning beauty of the Scottish Highlands, with all that entails…

The splendid isolation…

The not so splendid isolation…

The sun, the rain…the Scottish weather…

The ‘everyone stops to chat’ – ness of it all.

The midges – the ticks – the slugs – the deer – the golden eagles – the osprey…
The miles and miles of moorland rolling into hills, rolling into mountains.

So the next stop is Glasgow –

Scotland’s largest city – will folk talk with me? Walk with me? Or will this be a case of a million people altogether, but nobody to talk to?

Walking in the the hills has been hard – and easy…gravity can be an absolute bugger at times – but downhill, it’s the best friend I ever had.

Doubts, hopes, fears, expectations – not necessarily in that order.

When I first left Edinburgh all that time ago I had all of the above in equal measures – as well as belief and a commitment that what I was/ am doing is right.

This isn’t just about the new people I’ll be meeting – it’s about the adjustments – conscious and otherwise that I’ll be making. Are people in cities more or less trustworthy? Are they more trusting? What about my experiences of the larger towns like Oban that I’ve wandered through? People still speak to me – although, as a percentage of the people I pass it’s greatly reduced…it would effect the speed at which I’m moving if everyone in Glasgow stopped to speak…I wouldn’t get anywhere…
Will I be equally trusting and trustworthy? Well, my trustworthiness hasn’t shifted – I’m still likely to steal and sell folks family silver in the night…but what about the city dwellers – can I trust them?

What would happen if I left my IPhone on a bench and wandered on for 3 miles? Would it still be there? Would it be handed in to the police? Would someone try to contact me or any of the 4 million or so folk in my contacts?

My first thought is I’d never see it again. But is that my preconceived ideas or the people of a big city…? Or some of the folk of a big city? Or very few of the folk of a big city?

Or maybe people change from place to place? Maybe in the countryside they become rural folk really quickly – a phone on a bench – is it best left?

Surely the person who left it might come back for it? If I pick it up though, won’t I have to do something with it? I’m on holiday…I don’t even know where the police station is…Do they even have police on Arran, or is it just that bloke going around anonymously in his car telling people they can’t camp there…?

In a city…a phone on a bench – maybe someone will pinch it? Maybe I could pinch it? Who would know? I’ll take it to a police station…Maybe they’ll pinch it? I guess I could look at the contacts – bloody Hell – there’s hundreds of people here…who would I contact? I don’t want to get involved…maybe someone will pinch it…

Anonymity.

But…there’ll be more people to stay with…surely, purely by the huge volume of folk I’ll pass, or who live there and who are maybe following me on Farcebook, Tumblr or Twitter…they’ll be there…you’ll be there.

A bunch of folk have told me to watch out when I get down to England. Maybe they won’t be as hospitable as the Scots…There again, the folk who gave me a free room and held a raffle for me…they were English…from Hull…

Of course this is hypothetical nonsense. People are people. Already I have 5 places to stay and a few folk who want to walk with me between Glasgow and Ayr.

This is going to be more of the same…
only different.

Walk a Mile

Chris

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