“If my mind can conceive it, and my heart can believe it, I know I can achieve it.” (Jesse Jackson)

“Great things happen in small places,  Jesus was born in Bethlehem.  Jesse Jackson was born in Greenville” – Welshwaller lives in Beulah, now he’s heading to that little town in South Carolina, BIG things are about to happen, stay tuned !

Well the New Year arrived with an absolute hurricane.  Crazy wind and even more torrential rain added to a ground already drowned; I was little concerned.  My family get together came back to haunt me, and then some !  One of the problems of being an outside worker, especially one who operates ‘far from the madding crowd’ (I always feel it should be madening crowd, ‘cos that’s how it makes me feel), is that the common viruses, colds and flu and other such bugs like novo virus, passes me by.  Now that is all very fine, and I try my best to keep it that way, but once in a while I am forced to ‘join in’.  It is guaranteed that such excursions inevitably see my immune system attacked violently.  Viruses and germs seem to recognise that I am almost virgin territory and they home in like stuka bombers.  So it was that just a few days after the great Christmas get-together a tell-tale soreness in my throat alerted me to just such an assault.  I am a man and therefore a simple cold reduces me to a sad bed-bound blob, death is inevitable and everyone is required to be courteous and sympathetic.  Or at least, that’s how it should be, but as I live up a long track, tucked under a wild hillside, no such tenderness came my way.  I suffered and suffered, oh how I suffered and eventually I had to go see the old Doc – not something I do very often apparently (6 times in 20 years, so he told me !) so I expected some serious attention and instant cure.  So I got a dose, I don’t like anti-biotics, but sometimes needs must.

This particular sometime was determined by a looming departure to the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave.  I am embarking on the long journey, I am packing a (rather large) suitcase, I am endeavouring to negotiate my way through on-line Visa waiver and wondering how the dear Immigration Official will view me…. time will tell.  I am almost ashamed to admit,  I am excited.

I have adopted a simple approach and a simple motto, I’ve seen the films, read the books and –

I’ve got the ‘T’ Shirt

T shirt slogan

I think this pretty much encapsulates my mission............

For the next month or so I will be exploring some interesting regions of the eastern seaboard of the United States starting in the capital city of that New World.  The mountains of Virginia, the Blue Ridge mountains, the coast, the southern states of Carolina, great historic places like Charleston and Raleigh, all await my arrival.  First though, I have to try to assemble all the clothing and kit that may be required for such an elongated invasion of hostile territory – hostile in climatic terms only, I hope !  Not only do I have to try to anticipate nature and my hostess’ itinerary but I have to keep the dimensions within airline guidelines and at a maximum weight of 23 kilos (50lbs), oh yeah ?!  How come ‘T’ shirts are made so heavy these days……..

Once all that is done and bureaucracy has had its wicked way with me, once my home currency has been exchanged for some strange paper money with an old man on, once my toothpaste and hair gel has been binned by some pained uniformed individual, I get to enter the ‘great white bird’.  Now, for those that don’t know me, I stand at well over 6ft with a chest size around XXL, a waistline which would surround at least two of the cute little hostesses about to serve me a plastic meal.  For eight hours I will be inserted into a germ infested metal box zooming through the ionisphere at 0ver 700 miles an hour, secured into a chair like some infant in a baby high chair, unable to stretch my legs, overlapping onto my seating compatriots and unable to reach any of the hand controls that might provide some respite by allowing me to track my route or even watch some fairly up to date film. On arrival in that fair land I have to persuade the unsmiling automaton who awaits me, that I am not a threat to the ‘homeland’ nor have I the intent of remaining in that land beyond my time.  After all of that, all being well, I finally get to see all those wonderful places.  More importantly I get to meet up with old friends whom I have not seen for nearly three years and some I have not seen for nearly three months !  There are many people who, as I sit writing this, have never yet met me nor I them but who will leave a lasting impression upon this country boy from the wilds of Wales.  I am excited !

I am going to try to bring my journey to you in this blog as often as I am able but bear with me, I am hoping internet connections and lap top computers will not be too commonly encountered over the next month or so.  Better to travel in hope than arrive ?  Not this time, stay tuned !!

Marty the cat

Unfortunately, my little expedition means this little one gets left behind, still, he gets to be visited by a good looking little gal from the village who is going to spoil him rotten - I expect he will need to be put on a diet when I get back.

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One Response to ““If my mind can conceive it, and my heart can believe it, I know I can achieve it.” (Jesse Jackson)”

  1. sally mitchell Says:

    Have a great trip and forget the tax man! You can be certain he won’t forget you!
    Happy New Year,
    Sally M.

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