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Digital Subscriptions > Outdoor Swimmer > July 19 > BECOME ADVENTUROUS BY DOING ADVENTURE


Inspired by Laurie Lee, Alastair Humphreys busked his way across Spain. The resulting book became a personal memoir of a life lived adventurously. Ella Foote met Alastair for a swim and impromptu concert
Alastair played his violin across Spain

‘Don’t forget your violin’, I typed into a text message. I was heading to Kent, it was a very wet Monday morning and the last thing I wanted to do was tackle the M25. The South East experienced over a month’s worth of rain in just one day that Monday, but it seemed silly to cancel as we were going to get wet anyway.

I was meeting adventurer and author Alastair Humphreys for a dip in the River Medway near Tonbridge in Kent. I drove across the river and looked over the bridge – it looked a good swim spot. I parked and Al hopped out of his car with a giant umbrella and arms open – what a welcome! In typical British fashion we chatted about the weather as we looked upstream for potential entry points. Al favoured a spot beside a “great” tree; if you follow Al on social media it will be no surprise that the trees were his markers.

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About Outdoor Swimmer

Journeys can take many forms. This issue adventurer Alastair Humphreys tells how his account of busking across Spain became a personal memoir of a life lived adventurously; 'Urban Mermaid' Lindsey Cole recounts her tale of dipping to Scotland, meeting swimmers via social media as she cycled the length of the country; and travel writer Patrick Scott tells of a sacred swim in the river Ganges. If you have long distance challenges planned this summer our regular Olympian contributor, Cassie Patten, gives you top tips on how to recover from a 10km swim. Guest coach Keri-anne Payne continues her series on correct technique, this month looking at body position and rotation. And we have outdoor training session ideas to help you swim in a pack and advice to help you overcome any fears you have of the open water. As always we have the most comprehensive UK and international event listings to help you plan your summer swims.