Tuesday, 14 September 2010

The River Miño

On being content

On being lonely

On being alone.

Oh yes, that´s what I came here to do. I forgot for a minute. I think i should provide a clear paragraph about what I´m doing. No fluttering, absracts

I´m following a river from the sea to the spring...all 300 km of it. It´s not a tough task, Spain in the autumn is still hotter than a British summer....in two months I´ve only experienced 3 days of rain, lucky me.
I could do this a lot more quickly than I am, I think it´s because it´s so amazing that I don´t want it to end. Walking every day and then sleeping outside, wherever you find a nice place. I´ve been keeping a note of where I wake up every morning, always different. Abandoned houses, forests, benches, churches, on grass, on rocks, tops of hills, by the river, in vineyards.
I´ve also stopped, a lot. 3 nights in a handbuilt forest shack with a curly haired cynic, 2 nights in hot springs with punks and their children. Now I´m here, in a city. 2 nights with a nice guy in his house of gadgets. I´d forgotten what it was like to live with money, in civilisation. We went out for a meal yesterday, I´m meeting him and his friends for another meal in an hour - the two together will cost the same amount as I´m trying to spend...per week....on Everything. But to most people it´s a flutter of cash, a flash in the wallet, here today, gone tomorrow. There´s always more coming. And look what I´ve discovered my Iphone can do.
Not for me, any more. But it´s interesting to visit. Somehow I don´t have the anger to tell them why they´re wrong. I don´t want to contradict people, tell them why they´re killing the earth, why they´re killing society. It´s their path, not mine. And my path does not include anger and protest, for now anyway.

But the river. Oh the river. So cool and cold. To slip into running water when you´re hot and sweaty and tired is, I´ve found, the best thing Ever for inner peace. The water calms me, it cools me. I don´t even swim. I just submerge myself, walk in until I´m standing up to my neck and then stay there, still as the current pushes past me, wavering frills of water flicking up and down me. I watch fish jump for flies. I feel little dots on my skin as their smaller relatives come and investigate my body, to see if it makes good eating. I stretch my feet, slipping over rocks and pushing into sand. I just stay there until I am chilled, inside and out. Then I go and eat and sleep.

I want to do this for longer than a month. I want to walk everywhere. I want to go to Eastern Europe and walk back. I want to Kayak to Romania from Germany, all the way down the Danube and then walk back. I think it would take me a year. First I need to learn how to kayak.

But for now, today, here, this month, I am walking this river. And it is fucking brilliant.

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