Day 9 – Negreira to Olveiroa

Today was a test of endurance. It rained and it was foggy all day long. It rained the kind of rain that makes you want to sit in bed all day long and just read, knowing that tomorrow will be better and that everything can wait until then. It was the kind of fog that hides the world to your left and right until you can imagine that you’re walking on top of a mountain, with sheer drops around you. The kind of fog which clings to your body and slitheres underneath your clothes until any dry spots preserved from the rain by the raincoat become damp and join in with the general feeling of discomfort. I walked in this weather for more than 33 kilometers across almost 8 hours. I can’t really describe in mere words what it’s like doing this while carrying a massive backpack on my back as well. If I were to try, “pain” and “discomfort” would be used a lot.

There was nothing to distract me. Caught in the mist with just hints of the landscape beyond and the rhythmic beat of my and my friend’s footsteps, I was trapped in my own mind. I could not focus on thinking about anything in particular either so in the end, I just allowed my mind to wonder. At first I started reliving books I’ve read. Being one of the characters again or seeing how the story unfolds in front of my mind’s eyes. However, after a while, I started creating scenarios in my mind, as I sometimes unwillingly do when trying to go to sleep. These scenarios though were variations of past events. What was and could have been, twisted beyond my control to somehow have unfortunate endings and annoy me in the present. This reminds me actually. I cannot remember having any dreams at all since I’ve started walking El Camino. This is unusual for me. Maybe it’s the deep sleep that comes with intense physical exhaustion. Or maybe the abrupt and fragmented awakenings don’t allow me to remember having them. I know I haven’t talked about the journey a lot so far, but today, this was the journey. A lot of rain, fog and the inside of my mind. I’m too tired to write more.

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