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Monday, August 06, 2012

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry




"Most things in life start small, and get bigger," funeral director and educator Todd Van Beck once said. "Except grief. Grief starts big." And if you don't deal with it, it stays that way. 

The further one travels along The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, the clearer it becomes just how big a grief can be. So big, in fact that it will take something utterly momentous to bring it down to size.

If one were to place bets on the chances that a retiree who never walks further than the car could cross the length of England, by foot, in a pair of deck shoes, one would probably not place all ones chips on Harold Fry. And yet from the moment he passes the first postbox on his way north to the bedside of a long-lost and loyal friend, there's nothing we want more for this gentle, thoughtful man than that he succeed--and buy a good pair of walking boots along the way. One of these he does.

What starts as "unlikely" because Harold is so pitifully ill-prepared, becomes even more impossible as the weight of his world bears down on him. But never underestimate what putting one foot in front of the other can do. It's the way books get written, and great stories are made.