Together, Karen and I are walking the 27-mile The Saint's Way Path from Padstow to Fowey through the land of our grandparents and ancestors. I am so blessed and grateful that we are walking this path together. I feel that there is a powerful opportunity for us to walk together, get to know each other, pull the stories of our grandparents, great grandparents, aunts and uncles, together, and to walk this beautiful and ancient land together. We will walk for 2-3 days with Tony being our much appreciated camp tenderer and sag wagon! Karen is about 10 years older than me, and we really don't know each other very well. I got to spend time with her last fall when we all visited Kent to celebrate her mother's 90th birthday, and I know that I really liked her and appreciated who she is. One afternoon, we got to walk and talk together on the lanes and through the fields around her house and we walked well together - easily, effortlessly. Looking back, I believe that walk sowed the seeds for our walking together next week! I will get to know her in a way that is possible only when you walk with someone else, especially when you walk hours and days together. What we have missed out on from all these years past, we will get to develop and deepen in our relationship in three days - as cousins, women and pilgrims on the path.
I found out about this path several months ago when I was googling something, who knows what. I knew as soon as I saw the description and the map that I wanted to include this in my Cornwall pilgrimage and I also thought it would perfect for Karen and me to do together. This is what I first read about it:
Forth an Syns, is a long-distance footpath that cuts right across Cornwall from Padstow on the north coast to Fowey on the south. Roughly 27 miles long, the route only came to light in 1984 when local ramblers investigating public paths found a series of forgotten granite stiles. The footpath features historic remains, ancient footbridges, old tracks and fascinating churches and passes through a rich and varied landscape of valleys, woodlands, pastures, moors and ancient field systems.
These initial three days of walking will be my transition time. I will get my walking-on-Cornish-soil walking legs under me without having to carry my full load (Tony will have my full back pack in the car or at the campsite - thank you, Tony!), I will get to camp and eat with my cousins, and I will be walking with Karen for 2-3 days. I will not yet be alone. I feel so blessed that I am so supported to connect with my roots and the land of my people. With my cousin. On this ancient path that literally goes right through the land of my grandparents and beyond. The perfect length - 27 miles, or roughly 9 miles per day. How does it get any better than this?!