The great W. C. Fields said, “If at first you don’t succeed, try again. Then quit. There’s no point in being a damn fool about it.”
When I set out on the first leg of my ambitious journey, full of optimism and with a tailwind of support from so many, I realized that it would test my stamina... indeed, that was one of the goals.
I also carried the wise advice of my friend Isobel to “listen to my body”. Well, I’d have to be stone deaf not to hear its message.
3,500km from home, the pain in my neck (already reported) moved to my chest and increased day by day. I freely admit I was scared and accelerated my return. The delights of places like Asturias and San Sebastian, were wasted on my physical and mental state.
In Bordeaux, an angry rash enabled diagnosis and treatment of “shingles” (herpes zoster, the return of chicken pox). In one way this is a relief, but it’s agonizingly painful, and a clear sign that my immunity is not strong enough to take this kind of travel.
What seemed like a great idea looking forward, now feels like a big mistake. So, with regrets, and apologies to all you followers, I’m abandoning the big plan.
I’ll just have to find another way to live to the full... as another great man said, “Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.”