I don’t know where to start on this blog post. It is supposed to mark the finish. Somehow it was easier to mark the start of this adventure, the first step, the anticipation, the excitement. Since then, as we have mused more than once in this blog, we have been travelling through a very long middle, day after day and walk after walk of slowly progressing through the many, many kilometers and through all the different club sections.
And yet, suddenly, it does happen. We are on the home stretch. A journey of 57 days, of 885 km, and we find ourselves in our final moments. It feels like our farewell tour, setting out. These are the days we will say good-bye.
By coincidence more than by design, we start the last three days at the very place where we left off on our first day of hiking way back in June 2011, the point where we cut short our hike because Marian twisted her ankle. And so it is that we begin our final leg by completing a section we had set out to do on our very first day so long ago. Even more déjà vu , at the end of Saturday’s hike we once again run into the problem of having no cell phone reception. We are coming full circle.
But any problems on this last trip turn out to be minor. The cell phone problem is solved by walking two more km down the road until we find a signal, right by some roadside garbage bins. On the trail a rattlesnake scared the s— out of me as it darted across the trail just in front of my pole, its rattle loud and alarming, but then it hid behind a rock and allowed us to pass. Even the weather cooperated, giving us cooler temperatures and occasional breezes to chase away the mosquitoes, the rain holding off until evening.
Yes, after this weekend, these will all be memories. There will be no more planning ahead for the next trip, no more charting the remaining hikes, no more arranging of B&B’s or driving down remote country roads looking for our trail access. The feeling is bitter-sweet. Magdalena