Ewen, Manu and I were then scooped up by the Reverend Ian Kitchen and taken to Crayke to stay with him, his lovely wife Helen and the handsome Monty dog. We had food and beds and more food. It was a real pleasure to meet them and want to thank them for disregarding our lack of contact and treating us so well. The next morning our friends Mark and Pierre met us in Crayke as a great surprise. So we were a grand party of 7 setting out on Saturday morning as Helen and Monty joined us for the first few miles.
The first half of the day was a combination of country lanes and footpaths but we then had to hit a B road which was very busy. We couldnt tell if the cars were beeping in support or road rage at having to slow down. Half way through the walk we met up with Jim and Julie Moxon who had travelled from Leeds to walk with Ewen. It was brilliant to have such a physical display of support - they even carried Ewen's rucksack to York and spurred us on with the thought of that first pint! Ahhh.
Arriving in Yorkwas really exciting as it marked the half way point. The John Smith's Race Meet had just finished and thus the city was awash with lads and lasses dressed in their best dresses and ridiculous hats. We manouvred our way through the drunken crowds and eventually found a pub or two that would let the bare feet in. Pints and pub grub courtesy of the Moxons and then that post dinner quiet wilting set in. We said our goodbyes to Julie and Jim who had already missed several trains back and to Mark and Pierre who set off to find a camping spot. Ewen, Manu and I were accommodated in the comfort, peace and tranquility of The Bar Convent - highly recommended (http://www.bar-convent.org.uk/)!
After a lovely breakfast in the Convent's stunning atrium we headed for York Minster and a meeting with Keith Jones, The Dean of the Minster. After a chat and photo call, The Dean took Ewen off for a private prayer and blessing which touched him deeply -I'm sure Ewen will write about this when he can. Manu had to leave for her train back to Edinburgh and Ewen and I stayed for the Sung Eucharist service which was hugely powerful in many ways. During the sharing of Communion a lady came and blessed the feet and this coupled with the choir and the surroundings was enough to set us both off in tears. We had coffee in The Chapter House after where many members of the congregation stayed to talk and sign the petition. Ewen also received a personal letter of support from the Archbishop himself John Sentamu.
By lunchtime, the rest of the day was ours to have a holiday from Bare Feet For Burma and enjoy our anniversary. I left Ewen at York train station at lunchtime today where his plan was to head for the library and plan the journey to London - posted here soon!
Ewen wants me to re-post the link to the donations page:
Thanks to everybody who made this weekend so special and well supported!