I recently began a walk along the Ceredigion Coastal Path which, as part of the Wales Coast Path, runs from Cardigan in the south over 60 miles to Ynyslas on the northern edge of the county. This is my diary of the event.
Saturday 25th May 2019 06:40
Location: Near Pen-y-Graig Farm
The sun set in all its magnificence last night and I pulled myself down into the bivvi bag, pulling the cords of the sleeping bag tight around me and then the cords of the bivvi bag until I had just a small breathing hole to look out through. The daylight didn’t ever want to give over to night, although the sun fell below the horizon at 21:15, the daylight persisted for what seemed like hours, long past 22:00 until a star appeared in the light grey sky. At some point sleep came over me and I slept fitfully for an hour at a time.
My bed was a slope with a grassy hummock as a foot stop to stop me sliding all the way down the hillside into the sea. I dreamt of here, that as I was sleeping new walkers arrived and by morning it had snowed. The forecast was predicting -20 degrees C and we looked for a way off the trail. I hadn’t packed for minus twenty either in the dream or in real life.
I declared morning at 06:30 sat up in the bivvi, a light dew has covered the tarp that I’m using to both cover the bright red Belisha beacon that is my rucksack and also as a ground mat. My last few hundred millilitres of water have made an adequate cup of black tea and as I sat here nursing it I watched a pod of 6 or 8 dolphins work their way up the coast northwards from my left to right. A seal has just swum passed in the opposite direction. I tried to capture it all on video to upload it onto Instagram but these things never look the same on video as they do in real life. It’s as if the eye and the mind work together to add importance to the subject that I am viewing despite it being so small in the general panorama. When viewed on a photo or video no such importance is applied by the machine and I am left with an image of miles of water and horizon and small dots somewhere in the middle of the foreground that only I know are a pod of sleek dolphins arching their way through the water.
It’s nearing 07:00 and the sun is climbing higher in the sky, warming where the light falls, the breeze is cool, it feels like it will be a warm start to the day. Time to dress and pack everything away and figure out how to carry the empty curry can and dirty saucepan off the trail without covering everything with curry sauce.
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