So this guy, Terry, that hardly ever came to this area just so happened to be in the same place at the same time as me, just when I needed help. The Camino had provided. He was a historian and explained to me why all the roads were blocked off in the area but he knew of a little known walkway through the woodland. We walked and talked. He led me through twisting and winding walkways that I would never have found my way through, directly to where I needed to be.
"Just 200 yards down this road and you'll be back on the B road. Have a safe trip. Nice meeting you" he said. We shook hands and we parted. I wondered if what had just happened was weird or not.
Back on track and heading toward Glasgow I found myself in increasingly populated areas. I plodded on with agonising feet. My shoes were getting thinner each day and the pain worse.
I arrived in Glasgow. Today I met up with an old school friend. Mark Barrow. Mark has been good enough not only to take me in for a few nights but he also sourced and identical pair of shoes (only new obviously!), got them put by, and got me a really decent discount. Which meant the insoles I'd promised myself (Sorbothene) were, in essence, free. Top man.
We spent the rest of the evening catching up. It's so nice to be in the company of friends. Debbie and Mark are saints. I'm already feeling the revival. I'm sure the next few 'no back pack' days, combined with new shoes and shock absorbing insoles, will mean my final stretch of this challenge will be a more comfortable one.
Tomorrow I cross Glasgow and head towards Loch Lamond. The West Highland Way is calling, it's just a matter of where I'll join it.