E-Mail from last years walk
(Reproduced from "Tuar Ceatha" Issue no. 9 by John Crossan)
Having said that, it was a huge success, which was the reason of doing another one this year.
The walk this year started in Sneem, Co. Kerry and took a different route around the country, covering about 550 miles. It started the 7th of February and took about three months. The experience from last year helped us, we were more aware of what needed to be done. Last year nobody knew how it would go, we just had to pretty much take it as it came (sounds familiar!). No one had done a tree walk we could talk to. People were really good to us and helped us out from beginning to end, with few exceptions. That's how it worked. It was the same this year, as otherwise it would have been very difficult.
In '96, many people did the walk with an average of 8 people walking and lots of people coming and going. We had two horses called Spencil and Crescent who pulled carts and a Shetland pony called Marein (or Dancer). We also pushed handcarts. We survived on donations for the trees from schools, busking, planting work, our own bits and bobs and the generosity of many. This was enough for all we needed to carry, food, trees, shelter, clothes. This is all we need again, and as the Beatles say, a little help from our friends.
We raised the money we needed to buy the trees for the '97 walk from recycling aluminium cans from all over the country. We were writing to as many schools as we could find on our proposed route to let them know about the walk. It was also our aim to get more publicity this year as it lets people know more about what we are doing when they see us.
It was always our hope that our efforts would be met openly and that we would see people's eyes opening up to the importance of trees in our world. We were doing this walk voluntarily of our own free will. We are all inspired by different things to do this walk, and the one thing which is there for us all - trees. They give us many things and the only word big enough for them is - life.
The walk was open to whoever felt they could handle
it. It was very important that people were open and
willing to do what needs to be done in order for
this to be a success. We were walking the highways
and byways of Ireland with a purpose...
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