En-route to Scotland from Wales I called in to visit friends and their wonderful family in Carnforth, near Lancaster.
I discovered how brilliant it is to be up North. People are much more relaxed and trusting. You can leave your front door unlocked and nobody worries!
I was introduced to a fantastic northern supermarket, a bit like Waitrose called Booths, selling fabulous local delicacies including rich Lancashire plum cake and an array of puddings and pies.
The hospitality shown by friends and family throughout my travels has been so wonderful. I feel an amazing debt of gratitude for their kindness and generosity. It was nice therefore to try and give something back, which I did by helping move fuel logs for a friends mother-in-law.
Despite my friend feeling unwell we walked in the Lakes and caught up with my boss from a previous job and his family. The children rock climbed and picked blackberries and we all sat in the sunshine catching up on years of news.
I headed on the next day to visit Brathay Hall, an outdoor centre that encourages personal development for young people from tough backgrounds and enjoyed a cream tea in the grounds.
My route then took me up Kirkstone Pass which ascends high into the Lakeland fells. The views were so atmospheric. It is a superb drive with views to die for at every twist and turn and a 14th century pub halfway to break the journey in style.
Traveling through stunning Ullswater, I left my car and clambered up into the forest that led to Aira Force, a dramatic set of waterfalls. Early evening was a good time to visit and I enjoyed the peace of this magical place with the added bonus of seeing a red squirrel scampering along the ground, which the area is famous for.
I left the Lakes with regret, they deserve longer to appreciate their beauty. Passing into Scotland through Gretna, I saw a whole new concept – wedding tourism.
My camping skills were improving each night. I am now a master of the pop up tent, a fantastic invention.
The toilet block seemed to be the community hub, fully equipped with a library and arm chair. In this urban and unassuming place I got chatting to a girl who was sitting and charging her phone. It turned out she had taken a year out to see the complete coast of the British Isles, by foot, car, campervan and bus. An epic journey.
It was great to meet a fellow adventurer and share stories of the highs and lows of life on the road, swop advice on places to visit, light weight walking kit and blog writing.
My lesson: never judge a place until you meet the people.
To find her blog check out: ” Lucy walks around Britain ” on word press.