A trek across England

MC Kollschegg

Often when people go to visit friends they walk if the distance is short and take some form of transportation for greater distances. Not so with Harold Fry. When a letter from a woman he hasn’t heard from in 20 years arrives, Harold learns that his friend Queenie has cancer, is in hospice, and is writing to say goodbye. Harold decides to visit his friend in person and starts his 600 plus mile trek across the English countryside. He calls the hospice facility and leaves a message for Queenie that he is coming and she should wait and not die until he gets there.

As he begins his walk which, in 87 days, should cover the 627 miles, he reflects on his marriage, his former employment as a brewery representative and his strained relationship with his son David. When he stops for the evenings, he sends postcards to his wife Maureen and to his friend Queenie.

Along the way Harold meets the most interesting people and, through discussions with them, discovers many facets of his own personality. Sometimes he walks alone, sometimes others join him but always he is driven to make it to see his friend Queenie before she dies. Join the Monday Night Book Club on Monday, September 8 at 7:00 p.m. in the Gold Room for a lively discussion of the meaning of this curious journey as described in The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce.