I am the river – Norfolk, England

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First frost over the breckland of north Norfolk, England

Through tussocks, reeds and the occasional yew,

I am the river and you the view;

Through pasture forgotten and by trees of oak,

I will walk the land like liquid smoke;

Quietly.

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A bowing sea – Norfolk, England

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A bowing sea, Norfolk, England (a week of walking along the Pedders Way and the Norfolk Coast Path)

And guiding us on, through the rain and cloud, was a light as clear as any.

Why walk like a snail?

Why slide like a snail?

Why walk like a snail?

Some days I’d rather walk like a snail, or rather, slide like one. Let me explain. In 1995, Archie, a garden snail hailing from Pott Row Farm in Norfolk, England, completed a 33-centimetre sprint in a breathtaking two minutes. Indeed, the speeding snail was so fast, that he (or she, it wasn’t obvious) swiftly found himself in the Guinness Book of World Records. Yet, in spite of his clear talent, Archie still lagged behind even the world’s slowest of animals – the tortoise, the sloth and the lethargic Koala bear.

Reaching speeds of up to 0.01 kilometres per hour, it would take Archie the garden snail 172,595 days to slide around the globe. With his small stature and quiet demeanor, Archie would go widely unnoticed, viewing the world from a snail’s-eye-view, humbly, innocently and with no other motive than to broaden his own experience. It may well take Archie several lifetimes to complete the journey, but what a wondrous adventure that would be.

If snails tickle your inspiration buds, check out snailaday, a wonderful collection of one of the planet’s greatest creatures.