Freedom walks by foot. This was my name for the journey while I was walking for a week. I call it Moonwalking now as full moon was approaching till the last night of the trip.
Things get complicated sometimes. The borders that have never existed before get closed. The world is cut down to a municipality.
”A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” a Chinese wisdom says. Why do not make the first step in front of the home door? And go far away … to come back again.
I put together the complex map of long-distance footpaths crossing Slovenia. I walked the European footpath E6 before, from Ljubljana to seaside. I won’t forget painful blisters and sleeping without a tent in the bear area for a couple of nights.
Footpath E7 crosses the country from West to East. Slovenian mountain transversal (Slovenska planinska pot – SPT) goes in the opposite direction but over the mountains.
My wish was to visit Kanomeljske klavže on the way. This architectural miracle was built in the times of Napoleon to transport wood by flooding it on the stream and to support mercury mine in Idrija.
I like to walk in the circle, as seasons pass. I decided to make a big one, 150 km connecting E7 and SPT, with the mountain Porezen becoming my far-out destination.
All the rest comes step by step.
Deep and colourful autumn forests. Animals and mushrooms pushing their way through the leaves. Fogs and clouds and raindrops.
Putting the tent up and down. Collecting wet wood for the campfire and smoky smell. Gratitude for finding water spring or puddle in the middle of nowhere. Bathing in the ice-cold stream or in the sun beam.
Picking up mushrooms for the dinner. Walking towards the deeper silence somewhere inside. Watching the sea over the hills.
Dancing under the full moon. Reading with the headlamp in the night. Talking with white-haired hunters in the early morning. Reaching the old towns of Idrija, Cerkno and Škofja Loka in the glory of footsteps.
When I listened to the massive water behind the dark wooden door under the klavže I could hear the sound of the heartbeat. Or was it just dripping? I knew I was really close to the dream world – like the one hidden in the well from Murakami‘s novel.
”The ground you had stepped on took away part of your journey” Slovenian cant-author Tomaž Pengov is singing. I believe more footsteps we make richer our life journey is. Literally.
I invite you to walk now. Step by step, thought by thought. And we will meet somewhere.
Text & photo: Uroš