Even though Isabelle’s Secondary School Programme in Ireland was cut short, she has still maintained contact with our Ballyhoura Local Coordinator, Theresa O’Mahony. Being in different countries has not stopped them from going on walks and having a chat:

Isabelle: Since the 12th of March, when I started my Covid 19 walks in Ireland, I have only missed one day, when I had to fly home to Switzerland. Oddly enough in Switzerland we didn’t always enjoy sunny and dry weather as the Irish did since March, but I forced myself out every morning to go for a walk, even when it was lashing. Fortunately I live in a suburb of Zurich and I am only five minutes away from the forest!

It was a great idea of Theresa to start this challenge. I spammed Theresa with the different places I have been walking these past months, to make sure she gets jealous and definitely will visit me, once we are allowed to travel again, so I can show her all the walks and the Swiss Alps and lakes myself.

Every morning when I leave the house after my coffee, I think of the many coffees we drank together and of my Irish family and I miss the noise and the constant busyness and joy of Theresa’s house all over again.
I will go back to school soon and I’m not sure, if I can fit in the walks into my school routine, but I hope to be able to continue with them on the weekends and whenever I have time!”

Theresa: Isabelle and I both enjoy walking and we are very fortunate to live near the Ballyhoura mountains. When schools closed on Thursday 12th March due to Covid 19, Isabelle and I started walking in the mountains every day. When Isabelle left Ireland we made a pact that we would continue to walk ourselves – I walk in Ireland and Isabelle walks in Switzerland. We chat about the walks, I have called Isabelle while I’ve been walking and Isabelle whatsapped me beautiful pictures from her walks of the scenery in Switzerland.

We enjoyed great chats while out walking. We are in contact a few times during the week and we always chat about our walks! I miss her so much. It has been a great bonding experience and it has become part of our daily routine. We will keep up the walking and look forward to our future walks in Ireland, Switzerland and Spain!”