A 60-mile trek brought deep calm. So the author headed for Jerusalem, 5,500 kms away

In the summer of 2012, on a whim and with no experience of long-distance walking, Guy Stagg decided to trek the 60 or so miles from his home in London to Canterbury. Three years out of university, where he had battled against depression and alcoholism, he’d recently sought medical help to overcome his problems, and wondered whether walking might be beneficial.

Canterbury appealed to him, for its role “at the beginning of English literature” – he had been an English student at Cambridge. He set off having done virtually no planning, and arrived in Chaucer’s city two days later. He had walked under baking sun and driving rain with little protection, his heels bruised and his socks clotted with the blood from burst blisters.

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