Finally, the sun shines. It stays shining whilst we scramble our way to the very tip of Worms Head, which seems more like the end of the world as we stand, breathless, with sea on three sides. It positively burns as we climb one of south Wales’ most remote and beautiful peaks (after first finding it – remote peaks tend not to have handy car parks at the bottom with signs declaring: ‘Children’s trail starts here!’). It doesn’t shine whilst we discover Carmarthen but, hey, it doesn’t rain either, leaving two very grumpy children with almost nothing to whinge about.
Spring is glorious. I walk, I write. School holidays arrive and we do three trails in as many days. I catch the children smiling on the way to a waterfall and one of them is even asking for a pair of hiking boots. Easter passes in a blur of chocolate egg eating, tea drinking and writing and there’s still a whole week until my deadline.
I read emails dating back a year to check spellings and make sure I’ve left no one out of the acknowledgements. There’s an email from the publisher that I don’t remember seeing, advising that all trails west of Margam are included in the south west book (this one!) and all trails east of Kenfig go in the south east edition (the next one!). I take a deep breath and do a quick count on my fingers. Four trails. In Bridgend. In the wrong book. The sun dips behind an ominous cloud and I sigh.
The deadline comes and four fifths of the book is delivered. The typed-up Bridgend routes go into a hastily created folder called ‘Next Year’s Book’ and I dig out neatly folded-away maps to find four replacement trails. I check the long-term weather forecast. May, it seems, is not looking too sunny.