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Friends, I am not narcissistic or particularly vain. Having said that I am no different to other people in that I like to make an effort when working or socialising – you know the kind of thing. Pick a decent outfit, wash and style your hair and may be even bother with a bit of make-up. When I do any or all of these things it is primarily for me – at the end of the day, we all like to feel good about ourselves but,  if other people think of us as smart and well presented,  that is just a bonus to what we should all do for our own benefit and happiness.

Imagine, then, that someone who a few years ago would not have left the house without at least a coat of mascara and some lippie now giggles at herself in the morning as the need to get out into nature wins hands down against the normal grooming regime. I am an early riser and enjoy walking in the early morning – the urge is such that I often “cheat” by just cleaning my teeth and my face, put on a hat and set off into the sunrise. The only concession is a good slap of Nivea Soft – my trusted defence against nature’s variations on weather!

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As for picking a decent outfit, well, walkers don’t really get a choice in the matter – you dress according to the weather, that’s the best I can say about that issue. I have a full set of water proof clothing and can assure you that the trousers in particular do not do much for a lady’s behind! Should I ever be foolish enough to ask my husband whether my bum looks big in them, I can predict 100% what his answer would be! But they are a fabulous piece of kit – even in pouring rain I remain dry and “snug as a bug”.

What I am trying to say is that vanity is a luxury that I do not want to indulge in when I go out and about on my own, with friends or with customers. Weather appropriate gear, shoes that let you conquer a variety of terrains and all round comfort are a MUST – in my case add my beloved walking poles and you should get the picture! Serious walking is about challenging yourself. It is about unique and unforgettable experiences in beautiful places and the discovery of new walks and landscapes that I want to share with my friends and customers. How I look is rather immaterial, don’t you think?


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