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Alphabe Thursday C is for Ffyona Campbell

December 4, 2014


Ffyona Campbell

As described last week Basho walked to speak with his god.  Others do it to test their body and soul. Ffyona Campbell, for instance in the 1980s, a daughter of a harsh military man wanted to prove herself to him and herself. She was on a quest to walk, not only the length of Britain but also around the world.

The first trip in 1983 at the age of 16 she walked 1000 miles, sponsored by London’s Evening Standard to raise money for a hospital.  Then, she set out to walk around the world; this was not a continuous venture. First she walked across the United States of America, two years later Australia and then the length of Africa eight years later. Finishing up in 1994 with a trek from Spain to the English Channel.  During this time she returned to Africa and the US to complete parts she had missed out earlier.

These extensive walks were documented in several books in particular the Whole story ; a walk around the world.  Not literary masterpieces, as written by previous walkers such as Wordsworth. Without the delight of landscape in her narrative  her writing appears as the ideals of a determined young woman with resolute goals.   Campbell is a practiced sponsored walker; remarkably she walked 50 miles each day without let up, along the side of roads in all weather conditions. She walked across Australia, 3200 miles in 95 days. Her legs strong and relentless in their pursuit, but without scenery, pleasure or encounters human or otherwise.

So while Campbell tells us about walking and how it should be done with its fundraising and personal betterment, she was very successful. However, without the views, thoughts, (poetic or not) and the other human experiences (good or bad), it really doesn’t seem so worthwhile after all.



10 Comments leave one →
  1. December 4, 2014 8:23 am

    I adored Patrick Leigh Fermor’s books about his walk across Europe in the 1930’s. They were full of place, time, people, history, geography and culture.
    I’m not sure a book about endurance walking would work for me either.

  2. December 4, 2014 3:42 pm

    I am in awe of someone with that kind of physical fortitude…

  3. December 4, 2014 10:19 pm

    amazing, doing so much walking. Colleagues at work walked 21 KM for charity.

  4. December 5, 2014 2:31 pm

    50 miles a day! Good for her – sound like she had a plan {:-D

  5. December 11, 2014 10:55 pm

    Oh wow. I’ve not heard of her but she sounds so cool.

    What an incredible story.

    I’m sending this to our oldest Grandlittle. I think she would be inspired.

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful link for the letter C.


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