Despite both Alison Bailey, 42, and Anthea Wallace, 52, completing Paths for All’s Volunteers Induction Course independently from each other last year, the pair found themselves in the Healthy Valleys walking group in Lesmahagow and instantly struck up a friendship.
Coincidentally, both walkers were relatively new to the Lanarkshire region when they first started the course. Business-owner Anthea had moved to Lanark after spending seven years in Belgium, and Alison made the transition up north from England to the town of Douglas.
Now the pair are best friends, with Alison’s seven-year-old son even welcoming Anthea as a second mother, and part of the family.
Anthea said: “We share the same passion for all things spiritual and have the same sense of humour. Neither of us are locals too, so it is nice to be in the same boat as someone else.
“I’m happy to have found a like-minded soul in Alison.”
In addition to their regular Paths for All walks as volunteers, Alison and Anthea also go on their own walks together. In total, the ladies step out on three or more walks every week.
Anthea added: “There are so many walks in the Lanarkshire area. We both love going on The Beeches walk, which runs from Lanark to New Lanark and right now we’re making our way to the top of Tinto Hill which sits behind Lanark – so far we have gotten half way, three quarters of the way, and are aiming for the top next.
“We’ve been making the most of the good weather too, but when the weather is against us we’ll head for a coffee instead of a walk.
“A holiday completing the West Highland Route for walkers – which combines trails and cocktails – would be something we’d love to do in the future.
“What better way is there to get your steps in than with your best friend?”