DO you work in a factory, an office, a shop, or drive a company van? Are you a member of parliament, unemployed, a doctor, a refuse collector, a teacher or the chief executive officer of a multi-national corporation? Maybe you fix washing machines, collect taxes, build homes, trawl for fish, deliver mail or paint white lines on roads. It doesn???t really matter . . .
Perhaps, whatever you do, you have those days when you glance through a window and see sunlight breaking through clouds. And you think: I want to be out there with rain spattering my face and wind in my hair. I want to leave the suit or the high-vis jacket hanging on the wardrobe door. I want to boil water from mountain streams, sleep in unfamiliar places and awake beneath unfamiliar hills. I want to bloody well live because I???ve got only one chance.
Adventure to me is about standing on the summits of Blencathra or the Glyders while the wind and rain whip you off your feet; it???s about warming a pan of curry at the end of a day in the silence of a Scottish glen; drawing a sleeping-bag cord and feeling the hood encase your head; washing in a freezing stream; conversations around a bothy fireplace; the hiss of a petrol stove; sore feet and damp socks; an unexpected sunset; the sun burning your neck; open countryside; a freedom to roam; distant horizons; blue horizons; new horizons.
Because that is adventure. It???s about putting one foot in front of the other, repeating the process and discovering somewhere new. And if that somewhere leads to somewhere else, and that leads to the Khumbu Icefall or the Appalachian Trail, well ??? that???s how life goes.
This post was published for the Berghaus What Does Adventure Mean to You competition. Details can be found here.
Aye, that about sums it up! :-D
Cheers, cousin. If I’d had any pictures of Norway I’d have stuck them up.
It’s a really nice post and good luck in the competition with it. You should also get over to Norway sharpish before our weather returns to its normal – we’ve had a really good spring and summer so far so I hope it continues. There are few better places in the world in sunny weather.
One day I will . . .
Well, now we have a car I hope to get out of Bergen a bit and show some of Norway’s real beauty on the blog. It really is stunning.
I shall be watching.
You can borrow my inflatable for a trip across Loch Quoich if you want! ;-) You sum it up in one particular line for me – the one where you say about getting outside to live your life ‘cos you only have once chance!
I got a message about that competition but haven’t managed to do anything about it yet.
You could have numbered your photos and then we could have had a ‘guess where’ competition! ;-) I could see several Welsh Carneddau hill shots, Buachaille Etive (Mor?) looking down Glen Etive to Starav, and wasn’t one the Hunters Pass on Beinn Fhada? If not, could be the famous Forcan Ridge (which I now need someone to take me along as Richard won’t be able to do it again we don’t think)…
Hiya Carol. I think I’ll pass on the offer of the inflatable. After reading your epic Loch Quoich exploit I’ll stick with boots and firmer ground. You did well on the picture guessing front, except there’s no Glen Etive shot. If it’s the loch pic, that’s in the Mourne mountains. And yes, Forcan Ridge ??? you’ll have a great time!
Actually, you’re correct about Loch Etive. I was looking at the wrong picture. Mind, I have been drinking beer and wine since 6pm.
This isn’t to do with the ‘fitba’ is it? ;-) Or do you normally just drink wine and beer all night on a Saturday?
It’s normal. I watched the England games but that’s about it. I’ve lost interest now.
BTW – had a quick read of the terms and conditions, and how to enter etc. but couldn’t see whether it had to be a newly-written post or not?
I had a quick look too, but it was all a bit heavy going so I gave up. I didn’t see anything about it not being a newly-written post because I toyed with that idea myself.
T&C are always heavy going aren’t they. I love that, each time you update something on your PC like your AV or your firewall, they seriously expect you to re-read all the T&Cs in case they’ve changed anything! The damn process takes long enough as it is!
Ha ha. Yeh, like anybody ever reads them. You tick the box and click. Job done.
Actually, three days later I’ve just skipped through the T&C and there’s a maximum of 300 words so I’ve had to cut 280 out. Bugger.
Absolutely bang on – I couldn’t put it any better myself – and those photos are superb!
Hi James. Thanks for that. And coming from a photographer that’s praise indeed!
Wow, you have put into words exactly how I feel about the outdoors. I hope you won’t mind if I print this off and display it at my workstation. The photos are stunning. Good luck with the competition.
Hi Margaret. Thanks for your comment. I would be extremely honoured if you display it at your workstation. I’ve never had my work exhibited like that before so I’m pretty chuffed.
All the best, Alen
That’s an inspiring and uplifting post, Alen! It makes me want to get my walking boots on right now. Keep on doing what you’re most passionate about. I’ve slowly but surely come to the conclusion that it’s the only way to live. The best of luck with the competition!
Hiya Jo. Thanks for that. You’re right, it’s what life is all about.
Nice one Alan,I enjoyed this.By the way, and this is where dyslexia gets the better of me.Blenchara is up for sale,I understand! Keep well John
Hi John. Yes, Blencathra is up for sale along with the title Lordship of the Manor of Threlkeld. I’ve just looked at the website and the best offer will be accepted. It might be worth offering a few quid just in case no one bothers because they expect it to go for millions. There’s even a “viewing” section on the site, as if you’re expected to pick up the key and drive around. It’s worth a look.
Trying to post a comment
Have you been consulting that Admiralty Gunnery Manual again, Peter?
Peter(Tynemouth) Dear McEff. Yeh, As there seems be another Peter and I thought my Email was well encrypted. Dropping the Amirality Gunnery for the time being I consulted the ‘Admirals Fun with your Enigma Machine (and Commodore 64 suppllement’)for guide to encrypt your name so the Kriegsmarine would be fooled.Well I was fooled as well.Got bored and went for a game on myBally pin ball machine (Star Trek 1978 4 player)poa and fell asleep. Full details to follow. Your photos so brill that I feel that Nice will advise GPs to prescribe viewing them as safer than Prozac (? New job for you Pfizer..McEff sounds good) More to follow.
Peter, when I started writing this blog nearly five years ago I assumed that sooner or later there would be a dull moment. That hasn’t been the case. I look forward to receiving remuneration from the pharmaceuticals industry.
Some fantastic photos there. Great stuff.
Hi Neil. Thanks for that.
Nice words and smashing pics Alen. You are spot on about adventure meaning different things to different people. It doesn’t need to be a major undertaking to enjoy one, just the right ingredients.
Moira and I have just got back from a weekend on the coast near Silverdale. We were up at 4.00am on the solstice morning to watch the sun rise. We then had an easy 7 mile walk along the coast, grabbed a couple of hours kip in the evening and then at 11.30pm we were sat on a shingle beach around a small fire enjoying a drink and the sounds of the Morecambe bay at night. It was only a mini adventure yet had all the ingredients to make it memorable.
Good luck with competition.
David, that sounds like the perfect way to spend a day. I had plans to watch the sunrise from the stone circle on Barningham Moor but they fell through for various reasons, not least of which is a busted rib from falling over while trying to fly a kite.
A fire on the beach sounds like heaven.
Only a bell and a bird break the stillness ???
It seems that the two talk with the setting sun.
Golden colored silence, the afternoon is made of crystals
A roving purity sways the cool trees,
and beyond all that,
a transparent river dreams that trampling over pearls
it breaks loose
and flows into infinity.
Juan Ram??n Jim??nez (1881-1958)
Danny, you are a shining star.
Many adventures and more to come. You have built quite a collection of memories amigo and winning the writing competition is in your grasp. Best of luck.
Hi Dohn. More adventures to come . . . yes, for all of us.
“I want to bloody well live because I???ve got only one chance.”
Hear hear :)
Wow… I love the words… hehe. I felt you… :D
Just wanted to add…..” Adventure for me is enduring leeches… ;)
Ha ha. Thankfully, I have never had to endure leeches, Loty. But I suppose there is still time.
Dear mcEff Adveture is surely a journey.TheChinese have a saying ‘All journeys start with a first step’.Robert Frost said ‘Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by.And that has made all the difference’.Profound words.I followed Robert F. And it has been true.Along the way (Serendipity I would call it) Well I will see if you will continue to accept my blogs ! Meanwhile I will get the Enigma Machine hidden while the Mother in Law is out (At a Luftwaffe reunion) yours etc The Tynemouth Tirpitz.
Hi Peter. Robert Frost’s another poet who’s new to me. I’ve just read the full poem here:
It reminds me of the Robert Louis Stevenson quote: “Little do ye know your own blessedness; for to travel hopefully is a better thing than to arrive,” which is supposed to be based on a Chinese saying.
Hope the Luftwaffe reunion gets off the ground.
Those opening lines of yours could be set to music something like that song about a “few of my favourite things”. Your no relation to Julie Andrews are you?
Ha ha. I am no relation to Julie Andrews, though my grandmother once sang in a choir at the Albert Hall, god bless her. Thanks for the kind words, Ash.
There is security and comfort in not going on adventures. But it’s the adventures that make for stories worth telling.
Hi Kaura. You are absolutely correct.
I don,t anymore chrildren etc,but cycling through the night was a great one used to enjoy. Starting as the sun went down and finishing as the sun came up.and sleeping on a village green1
I found your blog while i was surching for places to hike while visiting Madeira.I`ll be there in september this year. Wanted badly to go to Pico do Arieiro, BUT now i`m not quite sure anymore. I`m used to Norwegian mountain though..but it looks very narrow up there on the path ….:( How many hours did you use fra Pico do Arieiro to Pico ruivo( think it was that), and you have to go back the same way right?
Adventures is to me travelling around the world , hiking, taking pictures ang meeting amazing people on my way. And i`ll climb or go that extra mile for a possibility of a stunning picture.
Have great days to come :)
The ridge from Pico do Ariero to Pico Ruivo is very narrow, but the path is completely safe and you should have no trouble negotiating it. Allow yourself three hours out and three back. That should be more time than enough. The walk is exhilerating and the views spectacular.
Well said! I like this blog.
Hi Jacques. Thanks for that.