We've Always been

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Sidebar

12
Wed, Dec

Tools
Typography

Synopsis
The impossible dream becomes a reality for Mike as he sets out alone at the age of 67 to walk
The E8 European path. In this engaging book he begins the challenge on Dursey Island, County Cork in the Republic of Ireland and ends this first stage in Dublin. Utilising an elderly campervan and a pushbike Mike shuttles along, experiencing injury, breakdowns and frequent loss of bearings. The walk will eventually traverse 12 countries and end in Istanbul, Turkey. If he makes it he will be 84 years old. In 2018 he arrived in Obernburg, Germany, having now covered around 1,170 miles of the trail.

Buy the Book!

 

Along the way Mike delves into the depths of Irish history. In Kenmare he discovers the ruined house that was once the refuge of a 17th century Protestant colony; in Killarney he tries to uncover the motives of a solicitor turned forger who was transported to Australia, whilst in a Millstreet pub the atmosphere is alive with the spirit of the Volunteers that would become the IRA. The events of the War of Independence and Civil War are traced as the path winds its way through Fermoy and Clogheen to the village of Newcastle. In Carrick-On-Suir the roots of Irish folk music link to Bob Dylan, while near Clonegal and Tinahely Mike finds evidence of the potato famine and the subsequent mass exodus of Irish to the United States and Canada. This fascinating insight into the legendary and mystical land that is Ireland concludes amongst fairies, leprechauns, James Joyce and Guinness in Dublin.
walkeastuntilidie.com

About the Author


Born near Portsmouth, England in 1945, Mike Pinnock lived his childhood within the dockyard. Until his retirement in 2005 he spent his working life in industry; for the final 32 years employed by Calor Gas Ltd, latterly as a Senior Engineer, where he worked in locations around the UK, Europe, Argentina, China, Pakistan and Taiwan.

His first book A Bootneck’s Footsteps was published in 2008.
 Walk East Until I Die was published in 2018, and Mike is currently writing a sequel covering his walk across the UK and Netherlands.

He lives with his partner Polly; they currently divide their time equally between Spain and the UK.

Book review by Jim Rees


Most of us enjoy a good walk. It’s a great way to keep fit, meet people, and generally shake off the cobwebs.

Mike Pinnock, however, has taken the idea a stage further – and intends on taking it several stages more. In fact, in his book he writes that he plans to ‘Walk east until I die’.

Mike is a retired mechanical engineer, although he still takes on the odd contract, both to keep his hand in and to help finance his travel plans. Those plans entail traversing twelve countries across Europe, ending up in Turkey, hopefully before his 85th birthday.

Crazy? That’s certainly one word for it. Another is wonderful!

As retirement loomed a few years ago, he decided he would like to travel the E8, a European long distance (you can say that again!) walking route that would take him from the west coast of Ireland to the Turkish capital of Istanbul. That, by the way, is around 4,700 km or 2,920 miles.

The good news is, he has not only finished the Irish stage of that epic journey, but he has also finished his book about it which has been published as Walk East Until I Die. 

Its subtitle is ‘A trek through Irish history and beyond’, and he doesn’t exaggerate. In seventeen chapters, the reader shares his interests, frustrations, musings, sense of tranquillity and blisters.

He was a stripling of 67 when he began the adventure at Dursey Island, County Cork in June 2013. Over the following month he made his way to Clonmel. Other commitments demanded that this was all the time he could devote to the project that summer, but he resumed from Clonmel to Dublin the following year.

So how did he do it? How did he walk all that way on a budget too limited to allow for restaurant meals and B&Bs every night?

Mike is the proud possessor of a small camper van and a trusty bicycle, both pictured on the back cover. At the start of each day, he would drive to his destination point, secure his bike, then drive back to the starting point. Then walk.

Each evening, on completion of that particular stretch, he would retrieve his bike and cycle back to the start to where his camper waited. Incidentally, the cycle back to the van often came after a seventeen mile or more hike.

Mike is no green-tinted-spectacles-wearing Englishman. He’d done his homework and his knowledge of Irish history would leave many of us ashamed, and he has that ability to interweave the apparently trivial with the ‘serious’.

He loves language and the way in which Irish people use English, with that quirky sense of humour that lies somewhere between gentle humour and scathing sarcasm.

The ‘trek’ takes in stretches of the Beara Way, the Kerry Way, the Blackwater Way, East Munster Way, South Leinster Way, the Wicklow Way, and a few highways and byways besides. There are also detours and wrong turns.

But can there really be a ‘wrong turn’ on a voyage of discovery?

Mike Pinnock gets very philosophical about events which at times added miles to his intended trip, such as missed way markers or, worse, no markers at all.

Pinnock has written that most elusive of books – a perceptive and, more importantly, thoroughly enjoyable travelogue. His accounts of ruined castles, Bob Dylan and the Clancy Brothers, the Famine and mass emigration stand side-by-side with stories from various village pumps along the route.

Since completing the Irish section and writing this book, Mike has walked across England from Liverpool to Hull in twelve days along the Trans-Pennine Trail, caught a ferry to the Netherlands and walked across it in eight days, following the Grote Rivierenpad (Great river path) to Nijmegan.

Last year he crossed the German border to arrive in Kleve; from there he walked south-east via Aachen and arrived, after twelve days, in Bonn, notching up 930 miles on the path. This Spring he returns to Bonn and intends to add another 230 miles to the tally to finish in Obernburg.

But back to his Irish Odyssey. The only aspect that he regrets was his inability to acquire a taste for Guinness, but this has since been rectified. He also wonders if he completes his journey to Turkey will he have hiked his way into the Guinness Book of Records?

Check his progress at www.walkeastuntilidie.com then click on ‘See the walk in more detail’ for photographs, maps and walking log.

Kindle $8.99
Paperback $14.19 plus p&p

Van Morrison

December IAN Digitally Linked

Advertising Rates 2018

Irish Ann

Shop Irish!

ARTIST
Liam Goarke
ASSISTED LIVING
Homecare Angels

ATTORNEY
Joyce Stevens
Murphy & Smith Ltd
Dwyer and Coogan
Healy Law

BAGPIPERS & DRUM CLASSES

Chicalba Bagpiping

BAKERY
Doughs Guys Bakery
BANKS

Marquette National Bank
BANQUETS
Gaelic Park
Irish Am Heritage Ctr
BEAUTY SALONS
Appearances Pk Ridge
 847-825-7615
Hair by O'Hara & Friends-Hometown
BOOKS - IRISH
TheIrishBookClub.com
BRICK REPAIR/REPLACEMENT
Shamrock Tuckpointing

CATERERS
Harrington's Catering & Deli
Unforgettable Edibles
CHARITABLE ORG

Mercy Home
IrishCommunityServicest
CAULKING & SEALING
Shamrock Tuckpointing
CHIMNEY REPAIR

Shamrock Tuckpointing

CHOIR
Irish Heritage Singers
COTTAGE RENTAL
Cottage Mary Rose
Dingle Cottage: 312-399-8793
Gurtenard Hse - Listowel Co Kerry
CRUISES

Andy Cooney
CULTURAL ORGANIZATIONS

Chicago Gaelic Park

iBAM!
Irish Am Heritage Ctr
Irish Am Society Co Will
Irish Heritage Singers
DANCE SCHOOLS

McNulty School of Dance
Trinity Irish Dance
ENTERTAINERS

Chicalba Bagpiping

Paddy Homan
The Larkin Brothers
Catherine O'Connell
Joe McShane
FESTIVALS

Arlington Heights
Dublin

IAHC
Indianapolis
Kansas City
Milwaukee
FINANCIAL PLANNER

Corrigan Financial
FLORIST

Garland Flowers
FUNERAL HOMES

Blake-Lamb

Gibbon's Funeral Homes
Roberty J Sheehy & Sons

GAELIC YOUTH FOOTBALL
773-719-2847 Jerry
GARBAGE REMOVAL
Flood Brothers Disposal
GOLF COURSES
Palos Golf
GRAPHIC DESIGN

Laura Coyle 773-343-7268
GROCERIES/MEAT

O'Connor's Market

Winston's
HEARING SPECIALIST
Mel Dermody
HOTELS

The Irish Cottage 1 866 CU-IRISH
HUMAN RESOURCE CONSULTANT
James Fitzgerald
IMMIGRATION SERVICES

IrishCommunityServices
IMPORT SHOPS
Ann's Irish Gifts

Celtica Gifts 773-784-7712
Donegal Imports
Gaelic Imports
Irish Shop
INSURANCE

American Family-Joan McKee
Riordan Insurance
JEWELERS

H. Watson
MORTGAGE LENDING
Linda DeRoeck

MUSIC SCHOOLS
Chgo Academy of Piping/Drumming
Irish Music School of Chgo
MYSTERY SHOPPER
Cathy Cooney-Millar 224-944-9654

PARTY PLANNERS
That Special Event

PENNY WHISTLES
Michael Burke
PHOTOGRAPH CAPTURING
Memoirs for Me
PHYSICAL THERAPY
SPORTS-ORTHOPEDIC
Athletex
PLASTERING

William McNulty & Son
708-386-2951
PUB/RESTAURANT RECRUITER
Cathy Cooney-Millar
PUBS & RESTAURANTS

Ashford House
The Celtic Knot
Clancy's Pizza Pub
Corcorans
Emerald Loop
Fifth Province
Fiddler's Hearth
The Galway Arms
James Joyce Irish Pub
Lizzie McNeill's
Mickey Finn's Brewery
Nine Irish Brothers
Peggy Kinnanes
R
ed Apple Buffet
Six Penny Bit
Vaughan's Pub

REALTORS

Koenig & Strey
Mary Ellen Considine  773-769-2500
RESTAURANT/HOSPITALITY RECRUITER
Cathy Cooney-Millar 224-944-9654
SPORTS CLUBS

Chgo Celtic Soccer Club
stbrigids.chicago.gaa.ie
ST PATRICK'S DAY
St Patrick's Day Parade
SWEATERS

Anne's Irish Knits
TABLE RUNNERS
All 32 Counties
TELEVISION-CABLE

Irish Journal 708-366-4665
THEATRE
Late Nite Catechism
Tony & Tina's Wedding
TOURIST ATTRACTION
Ronald Reagan Boyhood Home
TRAVEL /TOURS
BestIrishTours.com
Gadabout Travel
TUCKPOINTING
Shamrock Tuckpointing
VACATION RENTALS
Dingle Cottage
Cork - Cottage from $450 weekly
Don at 608-274-1180
WASTE REMOVAL
Flood Brothers Disposal
WEDDING PLANNER
That Special Event

WEDDING VENUES
Gaelic Park
Irish Am Heritage Ctr
Palos Country Club
WOOD FLOOR SPECIALIST
The Sexton Group

Advertisers

Paying For
Instructions

Who's Online

We have 111 guests and no members online