Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Day 37: Melrose to St. Boswells

 Woke up to a day that threatened rain -- which it did give us a bit of during our walk but it didn't stop us nor did it slow us down.

We started out at 9 am -- 7.5 miles? No problem! Steve thought we be there by noon the latest. We walked up to the hotel at 4!

It started out innocently enough -- we were so excited to start our walk on St. Cuthbert's Way. We saw two women also looking like they were heading our way. Lucky we saw them because they noticed where we were supoosed to turn which we almost missed! Mark Weitzel warned me about this. It was magical once we find it!

Beautiful rainbows filled the sky:

We caught up with the two ladies -- one of them is a priest from South Africa on sabbatical -- she's the one wearing purple:

We did stop quite often to admire the beauty of God's creation! We never did see the two ladies again -- they were in a hurry -- we thought we had all the time in the world! Frankly we saw very few people -- when we were closer to towns we saw people walking their dogs but for the most part we were by ourselves.

The initial climb was steep and at times very muddy (that was true throughout the trip) -- and I have the boots and pants to prove it! 

We kept walking and when we got to the saddle of the Eildon hills I thought of the stories I've read recently that there are fairy kingdoms under each one and couldn't help but smile! 

Glad we didn't want to climb up there!

I was so glad to have trekking poles with me and even happier I had expert Kelli Grace Kurtz teach Steve and me how to use them! We both literally would have fallen in the mud multiple times without them!

We walked silently along the path, being reflective and praying for those we are both carrying on our hearts. It was a profound time of peace.

The peace was broken at times with having to pay attention to where we were stepping and watching for markers along the trail. 

We loved seeing the sheep:

Among the highlights for me was stopping and seeing the wild flowers:

And at one point between the wild garlic on the ground and the white blossoms on the trees I thought we were walking through snow!

And when we got to the Tweed -- my heart sang to see all that water--

We went off the path and made it to Dryburgh Abbey. I loved walking through the ruins. I swore I could hear the monks praying which prompted my own prayers out loud as I walked around the grounds:

As we headed back over the Tweed and back on our course I gave thanks for this 'diversion'. We were both tired but we really wanted to see this -- and I'm glad we did.

Back over the Tweed we continued on the path. It is well marked which helped greatly!

When we finally arrived at St. Boswells we headed right to the hotel -- the Buccleuch Arms. A man on the street directed us and his parting words about it were, "good grub". 

Our luggage was there and we took off our muddy boots before checking in. 

Well, thank goodness I made a reservation in advance to eat at the restaurant. Neither Steve not I brought an extra pair of shoes and as both of our sets of boots were wet we went to dinner downstairs in our socks!

We are both tired but grateful, very grateful for this time.

Total steps walked: 27,133 -- 10.44 miles



    God calls you out from where you are.
    God calls you to adventure with him.
    God calls you on an awesome journey.

    Come where the division between sacred
    and secular disappears.
    Come and discover that heaven and earth are one.
    Come where God dwells in you and you in him.

    Let your life become your prayer,
    Let journeying be a walk with God.
    Come on a discovery of yourself.

    Get to know and love your own mysterious being.
    Discover within yourself sacred space.
    Enter into the time which is beyond time.

    Then everywhere will be changed,
    Every place will be transfigured,
    Where God is known to be with you.
    We will go on well - trodden paths and new ways.
    You cannot come as an onlooker, that leaves
    you on the outside,
    Though still you influence us, as we influence you.
    Come and share the journey.

    The God who calls you to the awesome journey
    Is God who travels the road with you.
    Make your home in him and welcome him.


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  3. I had decided to change my Daily Office during Ordinary Time and use the Celtic Daily Prayer cycle. It seemed like a good idea, after reading part of it, to read the blog of your pilgrimage along with it. It's almost like having the "guid saints" right along with me from Melrose Abbey on. I can't tell you how it enhances my meditations.