Today there were two options.. a shorter 16km day (which had my name written all over it) or a 32km day.. I decided not to commit to the sensible choice and see how things went.
I set off before dawn and wandered alone through country lanes as the sun slowly began to climb over the hills behind me .(Cue obligatory sunrise photo)..
The path left road and continued along dusty trails toward some suspiciously large hills.. I assumed the path would veer sharply thus avoiding said hills.. I held that belief as the hills got closer.. Any minute now, sharp left… But no, apparently I was climbing.. as soon as I realised I was in for a steep climb my athlete instinct kicked in.. I rolled 3 cigarettes and smoked them one after the other.. who knew when I would have the breath once the climbing began?.. (I’m truly proud of how I’ve learned to adapt since I started walking.. before now I would have stumbled blindly onto the hill completely unprepared in the nicotine department).
I wheezed my way up and over several hills.. most were ok but an occasional steep section did sneak in now and then..
Before long I was up along side the wind turbines.. the rythmic ‘Whoomp Whoomp Whoomp’ is quite a pleasing sound as they spin only metres above your head.
I made it to the 16km point and it was time to make the decision.. call it a day (in true Andy style).. or carry on..
Maybe it was the heat.. or a trick of the light.. but it was as though I could see the original members of team tortoise stood smiling and pointing into the distance.. (I say team tortoise.. it could quite easily have been the original cast of Dallas… They look quite similar)..
I decided to go for it.. I tightened my laces, hoiked my backpack into the optimal position and headed straight into a cafe for as much sugar and caffeine as I could safely consume.
The second half of the day wasn’t too bad to be fair.. I’d done most of the climbing and so it was mostly level or just gentle slopes for the most part.
Roughly 3 or 4 km from my destination, I rounded a corner and all of a sudden I could see the ocean sparkling in the distance.. it was actually strangely emotional… I’m not sure if it was 300km of asphalt and dusty trails or just the sugar rush wearing off but I was honestly moved by the sight below me. The last 2km into Cee is a toecrushing steep decent to sea level… I limped my way down with feet on fire from the long day.
Tomorrow is around 15km.. which to us 32km kinda guys is a stroll through the park.. there’s a few different albergues here and I’ve seen several people that I’ve passed/spoken to/shared a coffee with along the way.. even super Suzy the human rocket is here.. oh and another sue that has one tanned leg and one white one . Apparently you only need to apply suncream to one leg as the sun is on that side.. (it obviously doesn’t work.. I’ll try and get a photo)
Well it’s time to hunt down a cheese sandwich.. I used plenty of energy today and only cheese will get the levels back to normal. Until tomorrow