I think it’s fair to say that I class as a fair-weather walker; although I love to be outside, I very much tend to stay in if it looks like it might rain, even if it might just be a light shower. I think that this partly stems from our love of climbing hills to see the view – I see very little point in putting in all the effort to get to the top and not being able to see anything when there (case in point: this spectacular photo of the view from the top of Bla Bheinn on Skye).However, I have a feeling that my #walk1000miles challenge may change all that. Knowing that I have to get in on average 2.74 miles a day is definitely going to make me get outside in all weathers, as this week has started to prove. Although we’re very fortunate to live in the part of the country with arguably the best weather, it does have its grey days, and we’ve been ‘fortunate’ enough to have several of those this week.
I always find January to be a rather bleak time of the year. Spring still seems a long way off and the festive excitement that overwhelms December soon disappears into a cold, grey period that can stretch on and on. In fairness, we have had some lovely days, especially at the beginning of the week where I spent a quiet few hours wandering along the River Adur watching the sun set.The latter part of the week has been much duller; the frosty fields have been replaced by muddy paths, the clear skies for gloomy cloud.That’s not to say that I haven’t been enjoying the walking – far from it actually. We are very lucky to live only a couple of minutes from the Downs Link, a great path that is walkable in all weathers, and very popular with cyclists, dog walkers, joggers, and horse riders. The change in the weather has sent almost everyone else indoors, leaving us free to roam in peace, and as soon as we leave the path for one of the many footpaths that branch off it, there is nobody else around.We had quite a treat yesterday when walking in the drizzle, and I’m seriously considering promoting the pond back up to lake status as we’ve discovered that it’s home to an otter! We only had a few glimpses of it in the water, and didn’t manage to take any decent photos unfortunately, but it was so lovely to watch. The pond is going to become a favourite haunt of mine, and ‘otter-watch’ is officially on!Apart from the walking, I’m also trying to stick to my other resolutions, and we’ve enjoyed a new meal this week. We made a dhal makhani – admittedly, it wasn’t the most exciting of creations, but was delicious served with homemade naan bread. I’m not so sure this one counts, but Sam has also just made apple and mincemeat muffins to use up our leftover mincemeat. This is a recipe completely of Sam’s own invention, so while it might not be a ‘meal’ as such, it’s definitely new and when they look this good, who’s complaining?!Writing this has encouraged me to reflect on the past week and all its achievements, however large or small. Sometimes I think we can get too caught up in the huge parts of life and we forget about all the small things that when taken together can also make a massive difference.
The week has really been a great one, and I’ve enjoyed summing up all of things that made it so: I’m currently 6.6 miles ahead of target with my walking, we’ve spotted an otter, I’ve cut my running route time down by 90 seconds in the space of just three runs (I need to reduce it by another minute to meet my goal for January, so considering we’re only just out of the first week of the month that’s pretty good going), we’ve just booked our flights to Norway for our summer holiday, I’ve just been offered a fantastic job that I’m absolutely thrilled about, and I’ve got tasty muffins to look forward to this evening!
January might be grey, but I’m finding that grey definitely doesn’t mean dull. Cheers!