To celebrate National Walking Month, Emmaus Greenwich companion Malcolm has shared his love of walking with us.
Malcolm has been at Emmaus Greenwich for many years now, and in his spare time is a keen walker. On his weekends he travels up and down the UK on foot, averaging around 25 miles a day, and only stops when the sun goes down. He takes very little with him, just carrying his tent, necessary provisions, and a backpack in which he has an analogue tape player and speaker, through which he plays music as he walks.
“I like Dave Pierce,” Malcolm said; “I like the music from the 60s. I’m a bit of a travelling DJ! People know me now, along the canals and other walking routes. I often get stopped and asked for a photo.”
Malcolm has now retired, and volunteers part time in the kitchen at Emmaus Greenwich. In his free time, he goes on big walks.
“I love walking,” he said, “I love how it makes you feel, and I’ve visited so many beautiful places on foot.”
A recent favourite trip was to Paris. He has also just returned from walks to Cornwall, Blackpool and South End. All in all, Malcolm estimates that he walks around 3,000 miles a year, though he doesn’t strictly keep track. Malcolm especially enjoys walking along canal paths, which are peaceful and green spaces, and he often gets to experience nature close-up. Once when camping a pair of ducks set up camp either side of his tent, and stayed there throughout the night.
“They were sitting sentry!” Malcolm said, “I made sure to feed them some bread in the morning. Once, I was woken up by something licking my face. I opened my eyes and looked out the tent, and there was a fox standing there!”
Malcolm doesn’t use any specialist gear, but believes in the importance of a good pair of trainers. Most of his equipment has come from donations to Emmaus Greenwich.
“Blisters are inevitable,” he chuckled, “You just get used to them, and learn how to keep walking with them.”
Although he is now 67, Malcolm doesn’t plan on hanging up his trainers any time soon, with a trip to circumnavigate the Isle of Wight planned for this Summer, a journey which he has done before and thoroughly enjoyed. You can read more about Malcolm’s life here.
If Malcolm has inspired you, why not undertake some intrepid walks of your own? It’s a great way to stay healthy, and you could challenge yourself to fundraise for Emmaus Greenwich at the same time.