Last night I dreamt that I got a second chance. He was back, alive and I was being given another opportunity to keep it that way. It wasn’t that he hadn’t died just that he was back. But the situation was still the same, all the things he had worried about and which had drawn him low were still there. He was still tired of it all. He was still trying to find joy in life but struggling.
My job was to keep him going until the joy shone through again. In my dream I was tired too, I had been here before and knew what this would take out of me. But I was ready this time, I would not slip up, would not show that I was tired, would not fail.
I don’t know what the outcome of the dream was. But he was still alive when I woke up. It was good to have him back, if only briefly. But these dreams do make me feel a little wonky for the rest of the day. Usually when I dream of Bob now the dreams are more like old memories. This time I felt he was really there; like he was close again. As if it really was him in the dream. I hope it was.
Perhaps I have just been reflecting more as I cycled across the country he loved: Scotland. Bob was a man of the mountains and the sea and so Scotland was the perfect place to him. He went to university there and loved to return to mountain bike, kayak, ice climb and hike.
A few years ago Bob and I walked the West Highland Way with my Dad, my best friend and her Dad. This time it was just my Dad and myself visiting. We were cycling the John Muir Way; a coast to coast ride from Helensburgh to Dunbar. I will write more about the ride and the fascinating life of the man who inspired it at a later date.
The John Muir Way links onto the West Highland way for a time and we were treated to stunning Autumnal colours to accompany our memories of the walk from years before. I believe that Bob’s spirit lives on in many places but a large part soars above the mountains and coastlines of Scotland. And truly Bob’s spirit is why Dad and I were there. He unlocked in both of us the sense of adventure and desire to explore which squeaked but never roared before.
My Dad and I both had falls from our bikes (I am still indignant at the gust of wind which knocked me from mine!) and had seven punctures between us. I fell a little in love with my Specialized Tricross which I had never really tested before. A bike which acts a lot tougher than it looks! Together we experienced the extraordinary kindness of strangers – the godsend of a gentleman who cycle guided us through the centre of Edinburgh to our guest house having discovered us fixing our sixth puncture of the day – and the many quirks of certain Scottish B&B owners. Each day that we cycled the sun shone down on us and on day three (the final day) the wind kindly blew at our backs into Dunbar.
Our hearts, our minds and our spirit got us there but I think someone else may have been there beside us too.
I would love to have that second chance; a chance to learn from my mistakes. To notice the obvious signs I so vitally missed. But in the absence of that adventures must continue. I look forward to meeting more people with adventure in their hearts and one day I hope that my spirit will leave an imprint on others lives in the way that Bob has on ours.
I now mainly write on my new blog; An Adventurous Girl. I would love it if you would join me there by clicking here.