iiiiiAugust ii September ii October ii November

last updated: 11/26/03 added November 18th and 19th entries.

"There is a green hill far away
I'm going back there one fine day"

Since my last trek in 1994 I've heard this line from a Waterboys' song countless times, and dreamed of returning to hike through Europe. I miss the open road, the sheltering sky, the wind in my face. I seek a distant castle, a friendly stranger, a green hill - far away. Wanderlust, midlife tantrum, soul asylum ... call it what you will ... I've set aside my tent and sleeping bag ... the time is now.

July 29th I will depart for Dublin, Ireland. While I have plans, I do not have a set itinerary. I know only that I must be in Paris on November 25th for my return. I hope, God willing, to spend my time hiking, at least for the most part, the established European long distance trail system. I think I'll attempt to spend roughly a month in Ireland and Great Britain, with the remaining two months dedicated to central western Europe - Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

As in the past, my proposed routine is a four day cycle - sleep in the field for three nights before taking in a hotel / bed & breakfast. I have always valued the ascetic nature of this form of travel, as it seems to produce a greater appreciation of the simple things that we often take for granted - a hot meal, clean clothes and a warm bed. In addition, the time alone provides me with the opportunity to evaluate / consider my spiritual standing. I am not going to look for God, but rather to spend more time with God. I need to spent more time in prayer and devotion, with no outside influence, or distraction, and this trek may provide me with the opportunity. God willing!

I feel somewhat obligated to share some of my experiences with family and friends. Raised in the "old school", I have always managed to send plenty of post cards, and this world wide wow is quite new to me. While it is one of the "distractions" in my life, it has proven to be very useful. I will attempt, with the help of my friend and web master, Van Walker, to keep you all posted as to my exploits and whereabouts. As I am bound to be out in the country side for much of my journey, my postings, as well as e-mail, may be quite sporadic. We'll have to see how things run their course.

I'd like to thank all my friends and family for their support and encouragement leading up to this. Please pray for me along the way.