I am a lover of the outdoors. Hills, mountains, moors and woods, I always feel more at home when outdoors than I feel anywhere else, so recently I jumped at the chance of a few days walking in North Wales. I went with a few friends and we travelled up in one of their cars, a Scandinavian model of safety on wheels. It was a new car and packed to the rafters with features to keep even the most inattentive of drivers safe. It bleeped to let you know your seatbelt was undone, to let you know if you went too fast, if you got too close to a white line, if you got too close to the car in front, if the car in front broke, it flashed a light to tell you you were being overtaken and the sat nav even points out which direction around roundabouts you should travel. It struck me on the journey that we are bombarded by stimuli in modern life and like the owner of the car we get used to it to the point of excepting it as normality. I am as bad as the next man, I have watches with GPS, phones that talk to me, camera’s with wifi and even my outdoor equipment is full of gadgets and modern materials. I would never suggest technology is a bad thing as I am a huge fan and believe it is only as good or bad as those who design it’s use but I do believe we have walked blind folded into this modern world. It is rare now for us to be out of communication for more than a few hours at most and many are slaves to checking emails, messages, social networks and the like but none of that brings peace. That evening laid in my tent far from phone signal I remembered why I love tents so much. You know you are outside, you know you are in the wilds and only a thin layer of fabric keeps it at bay but you also know no matter the weather or time of year inside that canvas cocoon you can find peace and quiet. No matter where you find it, get out and experience it whether it is found in windy woodlands or on cornfield brushed finger tips make sure you leave some space in your modern 24 hour lifestyle for peace. A good book, a friends embrace, a child’s smile or a tent away from it all, never forget how precious peace and quiet is!