As I sit aboard the train to Hull to meet our friends in the North, I realise that the UK is very much a flat agricultural plain. Power stations line the horizon on either side of the train and the clouds are lightly tinted with a grey hue. There is no blue sky today and it looks like it will rain. There is truly nothing that can be done about this that is in my control however and I have decided that I will not let this darken my spirits.
We are heading off to see our friends and there are a fair few of them to catch up with. Nick and David have kindly agreed to “put up with us” for a while and so have Thu and Michael, which is lovely and greatly appreciated. I guess one could get rather down with the weather being like this on a regular basis. I know my brief stay in Ireland was marred by some dodgy weather, but I never let it get to me.
Heading to the Lakes and Peak Districts to go climbing was not really on my agenda as I didn’t know anyone there and I am really a sports climber. However after travelling the globe over the last year and a half, I have met an array of people from all walks of life who’s one true passion in life is going climbing. Some of which live in the United Kingdom.
Climbing not only has the ability to empower you and teach you patience, but it also takes you to and allows you to experience some of the most unique places on the planet. As I reflect on this I can smile and honestly say that although I have been on a journey of recovery and discovery, I have been on a climbing trip and climbed in some of the most beautiful places I have ever dreamed of.
I am currently experiencing a little bit of fear and anxiety about going to the home of hard British traditional climbing. As much as I would like to say I will give it a good go. I am also very much aware of my short-comings as a trad climber.
My goal here is to learn how to be a better climber and to experience the place, its culture and its people. I am so looking forward to getting in touch with a couple of gentlemen we met in Greece. Gordon and Gerry are a couple of the “old skool” Brits who have been climbing together for some forty seven years and are still going strong. Both in they’re early seventies, their knowledge and expertise in this traditional art form are second to none.
The exciting thing is to get out and do things……. whether the weather is shit or not. There are crags, castles, cathedrals and other things that start with C that I cant think of right now to visit, eat and climb.
Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory.
– George S. Patton