St Cuthbert's Way: a traditional pilgrimage route from Melrose, Scotland, to Lindisfarne, England, over the Cheviot Hills.
It is a very traditional path, used by thousands of people over many centuries. In whose footsteps am I following ... "the saints"?
Who were they ... indeed, who are they?
Ordinary people with a longing, perhaps, to seek and to find something that is not present in their day-to-day life. Are the so-called saints anything other than ordinary people, like me perhaps, who chose to live a certain way, with a certain intention, a certain orientation towards faith, perhaps ... and in whom something extraordinary - perhaps - happened?
I don't know.
But choosing to follow is what I am doing this week, and I want to listen out, and look out, for whatever signs will point me forward. Waymarkers, maps, footprints, pawprints, hoofprints. Yes. And the world that I am travelling through, the people I encounter, the thoughts in my mind, the senses in my body. Whatever points me forward, indeed, as well as whatever keeps me present to the 'here and now'; to 'this, and us'.
Not to scale (it's a dog's paw print, not a bear's!)