There is something truly healing about walking upon cliff tops, the sea in sight; walking on end without any purpose other than putting one foot in front of the other to get through the day.
Ray and Moth’s story is heartbreaking. Made homeless and given a medical death sentence, they embarked upon the South West coast path. All 630 miles of it was theirs when they had nothing else left.
It is so hard to comprehend that anyone can be so close to homelessness; it can happen to anyone. Their story highlights the commonality of their situation and how they are perceived by others. Just a few choice words and they were tramps, rather than adventurers.
I have to say this book resonated with me. After a messy break up, I walked around the Isle of Wight, feeling like I needed a purpose and to give myself an adventure, whilst everyone else I knew was off to a Balearic Island with their fiancés. It was only 70 odd miles and took me five days. I slept in a bed in a hotel and ate at McDonald’s twice a day, I soaked my sore muscles every night in a warm bath, so I can’t begin to imagine the hardship and discomfort of their trip. I only mean to compare in that I similarly found it healing. (Despite the McChicken Sandwiches)
I spent days on my own and I began to enjoy my own company, I relished being near the sea, I hadn’t realised how important it was to me, and I thought alot. I thought about the past, about the future all the while putting one foot in front of the other. When I finished I felt whole again, I had been restored.
I have only done tiny sections of the South West path but I felt in my head I was walking beside them. This book is so powerful, full of sadness but brimming with hope. It made me want to take to those beautiful cliffs all over again.