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Summer 2024 Writing and Painting Adventures

Hiking and Visiting

After the On the Same Page Literary Festival, I caught my breath and we were off to England for a long hike of The Cotswold Way. It's a lovely journey through quintessential English countryside, about 100 miles in all if you count the time hiking into your village's stop for the night. We took the 8 day, 7 night schedule, hiking as many as 15 miles in day. It's truly over hills and dales, with a good bit of elevation gain and descent each day -- you climb the escarpment each day at least once. We were well prepared and thus fared well. Those "training" hikes up and down Mt. Jefferson really paid off. We got no blisters, but acquired plenty of aches and pains along the way.

Friends Joan and Philip went along with us and have now indicated that 10 miles a day is the maximum for future hikes. Now that we're all past 60, that's probably not a bad rule, but I'd be temped to go on further if the terrain were flatter.

We took a picture each morning when we set out -- to the left are a few samples. I think we look pretty damn good. There's also a few shots of the lush countryside and woods we were treated to along the way and of friends in Bath. Enjoy. Let me know if you've a hankering for any advice on making such an excursion. I got it covered.

We finished up the Chipping Camden to Bath hike with a stay in Bath at a wonderful Landmark Trust property, right near the Abbey. Friends from England, and even Charlotte, came to stay the five days there and explore. Unfortunately for me, on the first night in Elton House, I stumbled on the stairs and did a number on my foot, which had me hobbling through the remainder of the trip.

I knew it was a fairly serious injury, but was loathe to take time out from friends and fun to have it seen to. Once home in North Carolina, I found I'd fractured a metatarsal. It was a clean break and simply required I wear one of those giant boot things for a couple of months. I am now completely healed and back ramping up my hiking locally. I've always been a tripper, stumbler and faller, but now it seems I'm more inclined to break things when I do. Yes. I'll be careful.

On to the new year and books about loving baseball and hating our country's politics. And, there'll be some traveling, too, to write about. Next up - the Women's March on Washington on January 21. Stay tuned!

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