Tuesday, June 11, 2013
Day Two: Port of Carlisle to Monk's Hill
It was a wet and stormy night. This is not metaphor but literally the truth. It rained all night and all morning. The fields were going to be soggy with cow and sheep shit also soggy. The Merrell boots were protected by Goretex...sort of. The gaiters helped....sort of. The rain pants helped...sort of. The lining on the day back was gone and all papers got wet inside the day pack. The rain coat (new) worked just fine. None of us were spared the wetness. And yet the students smiled and made the best of the day. Some held hands while walking in soggy fields, while others sang songs. It was the first day of the pilgrimage. 10 miles. But it was through fields in which puddles were everywhere. The good news was that about 12 noon the rain slackened to a drizzle, and then stopped.
The highlight today was a statue of Edward I, who was killed along the trail here along Hadrian's Wall. We would come face to face with British--or British Romano--history along the pilgrimage trail.
When we got to the RV park, there was a warm lodge house for us to take off our clothes, and so we did. We stripped, throwing everything on dryers, vents, and taking out hair dryers. We began (officially) the rituals today, with night prayers provoking us to think about the day. We ate at a pub that didn't offer food, so we had to dial the food in. Pizza hit the spot tonight. While it would be tempting to have slept in the warm lodge house, I went outside into the cold night and snuggled in my sleeping bag, getting a good night sleep for a long walk the next day.