The past 4 days have been a bit intense; we walked a total of 130 kilometres. We have been blessed with fresh air and a bit of rain. The route is enjoyable except for one day where we followed the wrong direction, and we ended up walking for many kilometres along a narrow, bustling, high-speed road.

While walking, we spend most of the time observing our proximity; it seems like we are tuned to the minute detail of the landscape. Carlos and I play a game and challenge each other to spot as many four leaves clovers on the go.

I have been thinking about walking art. I do not personally feel like an artist because I walk, nor I am making art by walking; I think that walking is actually facilitating the fruition of the most amazing piece of artwork ever made: nature. Walking gives me the possibility of disconnecting from the social rules and customs embedded within our behaviour while reconnecting with what is normally taken for granted. I exchange ‘high-five’ with the long grass protruding over the footpaths, I observe large creatures dealing with their own life, and I can admire the mesmerising dance of butterflies and other insects. Yesterday, I was surprised when I noticed, over a vast wheat field, apparently lifeless, a buzz. Initially was difficult to hear it, but when I focused on it, the sound became imposing. I wouldn’t have been able to notice it if I was on a bike or a car. The field came to life; it felt surreal to me, even if it is just a normal thing happening all the time. In the past few days, a persistent smell of camomile was accompanying our journey.

The smell was so intense that we felt inebriated; it was relaxing, the perfect companion capable of bringing interior peace.

Unfortunately, peace is something this region doesn’t have many memories of. In these fields, many young soldiers lost their lives during the First and Second World War. The land is disseminated of memorial cemeteries, and I find it difficult to stop thinking about those tragic events. I keep visualising scenes of movies I saw, and for odd it could appear to be, this large undulate open land seems the perfect setting for war. It is very upsetting! The poppies now appear within the wheat as red spots reminding me of all the blood disseminated in the not distant past.

Walking is great, but the endurance we are putting ourselves through has its repercussion. Our feet, legs and back hurt. Today there was a moment where I wanted to give up and take a bus to the closest town of Saint-Quentin. We lost one of our ponchos, thunders in the distance, rain imminent and physically tired. When this thought came to mind, and I shared it with Carlos, a wonderful heart appeared in the sky as a sign of encouragement.

Heart shaped cloud

People who know me know very well that I am not a believer; I need empirical and tangible proof to believe in something; but when I walk, those signs appear far too often to be a mere coincidence; any time I feel low, something encouraging pops up.

Bon Courage in the middle of no where
Heart shaped stones

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