You find me sitting drying my jeans by the fire, the rain has stopped, mostly, and I am feeling very content in fact I think I feel better than I have in a long time. This might be a sense of accomplishment, sleeping out in the woods for a night is no greater achievement than going to the gym but doing either feels great once it is over. It could be that the friends I visited fed me a very nice curry and that I have just had a sausage sandwich and two cups of tea (yes I remembered a mug today). I feel though that the sense of contentment that I have comes not from endorphin type rush nor a raised blood sugar level but rather from something deeper. I think that I have spent far too much time lately sitting around watching T.V. and reading the Internet and not enough time spent in the real world. I have said it before and no doubt I will say it again, there is something primal about sitting out in nature for a period of time. Having a fire helps. I can’t help but feel that as we evolved living in the natural environment, attuned to the rhythms of the world around us that our bodies and minds react well to being put back into close proximity with nature. I’m sure that anyone who surfs, walks, climbs, camps, goes for picnics or any such thing must get a taste of this.
Despite the fact that it is the summer solstice tomorrow it is dashed chilly on the side of this mountain. I will get one of those thermometers that record minimum and maximum temperatures at some point, that should be interesting during the winter. In the mean time I will have to guess the temperature, my money is on 3 or 4 degrees. It is certainly not cold enough to cause any concern but I had expected it to be warmer than this. Anyway, the fire is almost out and my jeans are still wet so I’m going to bed and listen to another learn to speak french C.D.
In bed now, the temperature has dropped, the fog (cloud to you that live down at sensible altitudes) has rolled in and it has started to rain. The environment here is quite harsh, and it is certainly going to be unforgiving, it’s nothing that can’t be handled if approached properly but I have my work cut out for me for the next year. I am regretting bringing the wrong sleeping bag with me, this one is very thin and has a hole in the bottom big enough to stick my foot through, this is letting in lots of cold air. There is no insulation over the zip and I can already feel damp tendrils of fog working it's way in through the zip. In some ways I suppose that
Lesson learnt – fate is stronger than planing: I did as taught me and packed each item in a waterproof bag and then put all those bags into a big waterproof rucksack liner to prevent any liquid based disasters from occurring. The only thing that I didn’t put in a waterproof bag or even the rucksack liner was a carton of milk, I figured it didn’t matter if that got wet. What I didn’t allow for was the carton leaking and the now free range milk being absorbed by my rucksack. My rucksack does’t smell very good. Really gotta go now, fingers are going numb, next time I do this it’s going to be somewhere warm.