The Space in a Place


Why do we head out…?

Is it plainly for exercise, to get our limbs moving…? Perhaps to shake off the night, welcome in the morning and start the day. A walk to work or perhaps saved up for the weekend when we know we have more chance to stretch our legs properly.


Heading off for walks by the sea, along the cliff tops. For us it tends to be the open moors or woodland valleys of Dartmoor that luckily lie on our doorstep. Do we actively seek wide open spaces or settle for just being out? The open moors can provide big expanses, that is until the fog, drizzle or mist comes in. Then it can feel like a different world all together, veiled, dappled, viewed with the wrong type of sunglasses or almost claustrophobic to some.


I have come to realise how important getting outside is for my all round well being. Not just to get out and exercise but to let my mind relax and wander as much as my legs. I seem to create space just by being outside, by putting one foot in front of the other.

For us personally there are times when it seems like hard work to try and get our young kids out of the door. The stress and the tantrums that occasionally do go hand in hand with small children, but it is always worth it. Coming back in with fresh faced cheeks and an air of the great outdoors.


I hope that one day my children look back fondly on the times we spend outdoors as a family. It doesn’t have to be an all day adventure and it doesn’t have to be that far to walk but I do believe in taking a flask or a stove and making the most of it. Stopping, pausing, sitting and having a chance to absorb your surroundings. Those are the moments which almost make it seem like a mini adventure or to coin the phrase from super adventurer Alastair HumphreysThe Micro Adventure’. It can all start with something as simple as making a cup of tea outdoors. It somehow feels special because every time it is different. Its a change to the routine. It makes us more aware of the simple act of it because we have taken the time to carry the stove, water, cups but just make sure to never forget the cake.. ..

So how does stopping for a cuppa relate to ‘The Space in a Place’. For me personally I know that my mind is given time to relax away from the normal, away from the routine. The space in visiting places outdoors doesn’t necessarily come from the space you visit; it comes in the space you get to clear in your mind. .. and that in itself is the therapy we all so often need.

So take the stove, or take a flask, sit for a moment on your walk, pause, take in your surroundings and be still. Life in the woods, beaches, hills often hides as we walk by then comes back out once we’ve passed. By stopping we get to glimpse these moments and share in them.

Go there, Be there.

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Last image by Jim Marsden copyright 2018.

All other images by Moorswood copyright 2019.