Tuesday, 7 August 2007

Pilgrimage from Lumiere to Castiglione Della Pescaia 03/08/07

I got going about 07:30 this morning and had a reasonably pleasant walk to Follonica…as pleasant as it can be walking along the main road anyway :)

I don’t know whether they do this every day, or whether it was just a one off, but as I arrived in town a huge market was being set up. It was like being in Thailand with heaps of really cheap clothes, shoes and general junk.

It seems I was just in time because as this market was setting up the food market next door was closing down, so I went and got a feed of chicken and chips. I then stuffed around town for a few hours and decided that I would walk some of the night.

From about 100kms ago, whenever I walk on the main roads, signs tell me how far I’ve got to go to get to Rome…every 100m! Its been driving me mad because I am constantly working out what day I think I'll arrive. To make it worse, whenever I check flights to London the prices keep on increasing!

Now, I’m sure there are a few of you out there thinking “What’s he doing flying to London? Isn’t he meant to be walking to Jerusalem?”. And the answer is “yes…good question” :)

I have decided to have a few weeks off in August where I will be actively drumming up support for a documentary, Hopefully I will be walking again by the start of September.

So, now I’ve decided to arrive in Rome on the morning of the 10th. This means hat I have to walk just over 30kms a day until then. So a night walk was sounding good to give myself a head-start.

It was a great walk into the hills but I was a bit worried I was going to hungry as the town that I planned to have dinner in, Pian D’Alma, turned out to be not much of a town.

The first restaurant I tried was just closing, but they also sold some local products so I figured if I was going to go hungry I might as well get a bottle of wine…

All was not lost though, I soon found this posh little restaurant which looked great. I thought I better treat myself :) I had an awesome meal of beef stew, a big plate of beans and a nice bottle of wine. It was a perfect pilgrims meal.

I only ended up having a couple of glasses of my wine, so that bottle went in the bag as well and then it was then back to the road. As you can imagine it was a bit of a struggle after such a good meal…

The walk was great! I got a lot of people honking for encouragement…or more likely honking to say “get off the fucking road you dickhead!”, but I took them for honks of encouragement ;)

When I finally made it to Castiglione Della Pescaia it was almost 1am and I was buggered. This town has a long stretch of hotels and caravan parks so I thought I was going to have to walk the 2kms through it before finding a suitable campground. Luckily I was wrong. There was a farmers paddock right in the middle of everything, and it had a ditch down the side, that when I set up within, gave me perfect cover :)


pris said...

hi Ben!
walk is perfect...
have fun and take care...
I wish you always the best....

Nicu Panaitescu said...

Hey Ben!
By now, you should be rather close to Rome and preparing your tryumphal march on Via Aurelia :-) I wish I was there to see you and shout: "Ecco un bravo ragazzo!!!"
I sincerely admire what you are doing and hope to hear from you soon.