Saturday, October 26, 2013

Caminante Revisited

Sepia Saturday is celebrating its 200th edition this week and Alan has invited all contributors to repost a favourite post . I thought I'd use this one which explains why I chose my blogging name.

This post has been inspired by Sepia Saturday's photo for 13th April of a group of walkers, and my chosen blogging name Caminante, which means, simply, Walker (although it can also mean hobo!).  

Photos of my childhood are rather scarce, as we didn't own a camera, so my parents paid for a photographer, usually on a birthday. This shot looks like I'm about to go for a walk, so probably is the first recording of my hobby.

We spent our honeymoon on Tenerife, during which time we went to Pico Teide, the highest mountain in Spain.  Here I am right at the top. Thew air was pretty thin up there at 12,200 feet, as I realised when my cigarette only stayed alight whilst you drew on it, immediately then going out.  Someone was trying to tell me something, but it took another 3 years and the arrival of our daughter before I gave up!

In 1986/7 I spent 4 months in the Falkland Islands - sensibly some years after the war!  I had a weekend in January of R&R on the oddly named, but beautiful, Carcass Island, As I found, the weather there, in the height of their summer, was normally quite pleasant, although it could snow at any time. Here I am on one of the little hills dotting the island.

I've enjoyed walking all my adult life, and for the last twenty years or so, I've walked several times a month, originally around our home in Salisbury, so I've walked nearly all the footpaths in Wiltshire, Hampshire and Dorset, on my regular Sunday morning jaunts.  The farthest I got (limited by the length of car journey to the start), was West Bay in Dorset, which UK readers will know as Broadchurch from the current detective series. Here's how the murder scene looked in August 2003.

Now we live on Lanzarote, 70 miles off the coast of Western Sahara, it's springtime all year round, so shorts and T shirts are all I need - and a good pair of shoes because the volcanic stone is very harsh.  This photo from last November shows both aspects.

These days, I tend not to walk alone, except on well trodden paths, because, although you are unlikely to get exposure, even a twisted ankle in a spot with no mobile phone reception could be quite a challenge. I'm a member, along with about 90 others of an active walking group here.  Fortunately, we normally only get between 12 and 24 on each walk, otherwise it could get out of hand!  Here they are a week ago, having a breather during a walk around Los Helichos, a range of volcanoes in the north of the island, locally famous for their spring flowers.

This brings me back to the Sepia Saturday prompt, and the contrast between what is seen now and then as suitable attire for hiking.  I can't imagine how uncomfortable they would have been in rain, or blazing sunshine, or indeed on anything but good paved surfaces.  Perhaps it was the fact that walking was involved that was the mystery element!   

To see what others have chosen as their birthday contribution, visit Sepia Saturday's 200th edition.