For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move. ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

Sunday, 24 June 2007

Genius Loci

Yes, they took a walk - a tactic I have always employed myself when our loud and stressful, humdrum world of mobile phones, motorways and materialism threatens to overwhelm. And as the years have gone by I've become more and more obsessed and passionate about getting out into the Great Outdoors and walking through unspoilt, unpolluted landscapes, seeking out the wild and secret places. You can only do this properly on foot. The slow pace of walking allows you to become absorbed into the landscape. And you need not travel far to find these special spots - most people live within relatively easy reach of some relaxing and numinous place where a trace of beauty can be glimpsed, a morsel of freedom tasted - whether it's a remote Scottish mountain or a humble urban park. I used to think this simple and harmless activity was sheer escapism. Now I believe absolutely that it's a necessity (at least for me), a bringer of sanity in the insane capitalist culture we inhabit. No escape from reality - indeed, quite the reverse, a flight into reality, a gateway into the older, timeless reality of the natural world...

2 comments:

cbb said...

SW, this is so beautifully expressed it should be inscribed somewhere for the edification of the general public. Lovely!

The Solitary Walker said...

Well, thank you! It remains my creed.