Last night’s note: we stayed with the vice president of Unison, arguably one of the UK’s most important unions. He left us with a prophecy: Andy Burnham, the Labour mayor of Manchester, will be the next prime minister.
Today’s walk was long. On our 34-km march, we enjoyed almost every staple of a British day out: we negotiated busy roads, walked along footpaths and even tucked into a picnic! Of course, it would be highly un-British to leave out the weather, and given our reason for marching, it would also be remiss. While sunny autumn days are nothing new, we have noted periods of heat, a once rare feature in late October in Western Europe. It stands as a stark reminder that climate change is real and already happening.
Fully assembled, we set off on our day’s journey. Unfortunately, the Met Forecast neglected to warn us of rain, which took us by surprise when it started to fall at noon. Having learned not to trust the British weather, we were thankfully equipped with umbrellas. Our march so far has left us trying to figure out whether the clouds we see in the sky will drench us or not!
While stopping to eat, Irdo was greeted by a magpie, a cheeky soul happy to eat our food, whether it was offered or not…
The afternoon proved more pleasant. Anton took us along paths so well-hidden, we doubt they appear on any map. We sometimes stray into sheep’s habitat, who tend to stare at us with curiosity, while the horses we meet seem in equal parts fascinated and frightened by our flags.
At the end of our day’s march, we were greeted by a group of supporters in Alnwick (pronounced A-nick). They took us to a youth hostel that they had very kindly reserved for us – and covered the cost of! Alnwick folk, we cannot thank your wonderful people enough for this. Upon arrival, we answered the usual questions and were treated to a recital by local musician Alistair Anderson. After a night of festivities, climate talk and great company, we were very, very tired, and ready for bed.
You can appreciate the performance in the following video:
Written by: Carlos Buj
Proofreading: Beth Andralojc