27. Diary Entry: Hiking

First of all I have to say that for me the whole excursion was something very special
because of the country itself, the people of whose I can happily call some of them friends
now and the very special moments some of us share after only ten days of time. I am more than satisfied with the whole trip even though I got sick half through the excursion.

Nevertheless I have a special day I want to share with you because it seems that it got
stuck in my head and I’m happy that I’ll never get rid of it again in my life.
On Tuesday, 8th September the whole group took our own excursion bus early in the
morning to get to Dover. On our first day in England we’ve already been at Dover because
this place is where the ferry arrives from Calais. Our bus was driven throughout the whole
excursion by our personal bus driver from Germany. I think in some ways we got used to
him as well as he got used to our singing in the back of the bus on every bus drive. So we
took the bus to Dover and just after getting off we had to decide whether to join either the
group visiting Dover castle or the group heading along the white cliffs to Deal. I knew that
the group doing the walk had to hike for 17 kilometres and not only this fact but also my
love for nature and in general being outside drove me to the decision to go for the hike. At
some part during the day I totally regretted my decision, but for the moment I was
absolutely stoked. So we started walking along a normal street for about the first 20
minutes and I already wondered whether this is the actual hike we were promised. But
once we got to the real path it started to get enjoyable. The first part of the hike was as
amazing as I thought it will be. The weather was absolutely perfect (especially for the
normal conditions in rainy England) and the view was breathtaking. I brought my filming
camera as well as my other camera to take photos with me and one could barely say I
didn’t use them during the hike. I was more than happy to be there right in this moment
because so many aspects were soothing my soul back then. I was at an extremely
beautiful place I’ve never been before, I walked along the white cliffs with actually some
strangers I just knew for only 4 days back then and I really started to like a lot of them.

And lastly I was able to catch all these moments and nature and good feelings with my
cameras which is my passion. I was actually not only hiking along the cliffs but more than
often running to the fore to the group because filming and taking photos always took some
time. But even though I was still smiling because I felt like a Hobbit in the Lord of the Rings
and the rest of the group was part of the fellowship. It is funny what kind of imagination
different places provide. The surroundings also changed at some parts of the route.

Where the landscape looked like the scenery of the Lord of the Rings in the beginning it later on changed to some quite of rainforesty looking path with trees like palm trees. It was
amazing because from one point to another you felt like you’re not in Great Britain
anymore. In my opinion the sun had quite a big affect on that feeling. After we passed the
“rainforest” we took a route down to the water where we found a little beach with a very
beautiful view on the cliffs. This was our first great stop of the hike. Some of the group
members sat down near a bench to eat their lunch but some others including me couldn’t
resist on climbing over the handrail and exploring the beach. I wouldn’t say it was a very
beautiful postcard-known beach but I liked it anyway. It was full of little stones and hidden
beneath the cliffs. Sascha, a guy I got to know during the excursion, couldn’t resist on
walking barefoot in the water. I was totally cool with just walking on the beach, listening to
the little waves and breathing in the wonderful air. I can remember thinking that I really
missed the sea. I grew up in the northern part of Germany where it’s only a stone’s throw
to North and Baltic Sea. After our little break we took some stairs back to the height we
used to walk along the seaside. Back up we walked further on, some people were talking
to each other, I for myself enjoyed not talking and just having a look around and filming.

After ¾ of the total hike I started feeling unwell, but thought I could bear up until the end.
This last bit of the hike was the hardest thing I did in a while. I had such huge pain that I
basically the whole time thought I couldn’t walk even one more step forward. I remember
pressing my keys in my pocket that tight just to hope it would hurt more that my actual
pain. I even thought I would pass out if I hadn’t controlled my breathing throughout the last
bit of walking. I’m a bit sad that I was in such a pain the rest of the way, because when I
looked up from the ground while walking I thought that all the places looked like movie
locations. I couldn’t concentrate on them in that moment but I think thats life. When we
finally arrived in Deal we went to eat some burger and fries and I was the happiest person
knowing not to walk anymore but to sit and rest. When we got back to the beach the group
visiting Dover Castle arrived and we just sat down at the beach in Deal and chilled for
about two hours. It was not that chilly but the wind blew a bit and we listened to Ben
Howard while the waves were crushing towards the shore. After such a both beautiful and
disturbing walk I was happy to just be where I was, not moving just enjoying the very
special moment.