Today is supposed to be bomber. 15 degrees and blue skies, windy even. Can it can any better? I think not. We are leaving Edinburgh right now and we have an hour and half to get to the other side of the country, litterally, I hope the conditions remain golden. We are all in pretty high spirits, but the only thing that is missing is my girlfriend. Some people hate reading blogs because they don't want to read about peoples fluffy thoughts and personal lives outside of the climbing circle, they want facts, numbers and photo's, well let me ask you this, what is climbing and who would we be if it were not for the ability to laugh at it all, the minor details of the daily grind or the people we love?
Climbing isn't the same to me without Lydia, so effectively, I can't write about climbing without mentioning her. At the very least, it's worth noting that she is missed today, even more than the last week and the feeling is growing with every moment that passes. We havne't spoken on the phone in 5 days, I presume that's the source. I wish she could be here, she has such a large appetite for beauty and culture and people that I think she would love it even more than we do. Her presence would no doubt make me climb harder. I'll have to do my best regardless, her photo is on my desktop, that will have to suffice.
Another level of inspiration comes from the late great Wolfgang Gullich. I can't explain enough how much I admire his dedication, passion and hard work. He was one of the few individuals who could match brain with braun. He could develop an idea and then work towards it and in the end his body could always produce results. There are a lot of strong gifted climbers in the world, but who lack the ability to keep things together mentally, while training or free soloing or otherwise. Wolfgang was the exception. I've never been a powerful climber myself, I have to work really hard to boulder V12, but I have always tried to maintain a balaced ratio of strength of mind and strength of body. If nothing else, this is what I strive for.
In his book, Wo Gu was quoted as saying this…
"Forget the concept of reaching for a hold softly, because at your limit, there is nothing soft to reach for. You must make your grip a vice, or forget it."
As I go out today I shall carry my thoughts with me. Even though I am lame and still trying the crux on top rope, it's nice to think that both Slim and Mr.G are somewhere in my mind, pushing me higher up the wall.!