We have gone past the 2000km point just a kilometer before where we are camping tonight. Can you believe it – we have walked 2000km!!!!!!
We put 31km in the bank today, we had a nice variety but we worked hard for our distance.
It started with a gentle walk in a fresh smelling (lots of ferns) forest, then took as down some mountain roads.
We even got to an amateur astronomy site:
There were 2 nice lookouts, pulpit rock and pinnacle rock. ￼Sorry about the poor lightning but see how Trevor is scrambling down some rocks in the top left hand corner of the photograph.
We had two moderate climbs and one tough ascend – just to remind our climbing muscles that the party isn’t over yet. But it was the rock scrambles which exhausted us and took most of our time. They are fun but you need to keep concentration levels sharp, every step must be calculated. And they can very easily take 20min per km.
We chatted to Doc today. He is a strong and fast hiker but has teamed up with Chappie (much slower and hard of hearing: he wears a hearing aid but it’s switched off, he turns it on when he wants to talk to you) and Fire Ant (lived in Namibia for a while and has climbed Mafadi in the Drakensberg, also much slower and on a 50day section hike). They all hike on their own but do the same daily distance so that they can tent together at night.
We asked Doc about it. He says that he and Chappie met earlier on (Fire Ant joined later) and started a friendship and tenting together. He met Chappie’s wife when she drove up to visit Chappie, and Chappie met his wife when she drove up to meet him. And somehow it became everybody’s expectation that he will stick with Chappie, and he is cool with that as he is “loyal to a fault”
The biggest mistake in his life, he said, was when he was training for and then running a marathon with his previous wife. At 9 miles he felt strong and left her behind, by 17miles she had caught up with him but not forgiven him. And I guess that is where he realised that going as hard and fast as you can when you are in the game with somebody else is not the person he wanted to be. Now he sticks with Chappie.
That got me thinking. I am very guilty of putting the goal ahead of people around me (yes I can see you are all nodding). I like running with Trevor when he is injury free and can go faster than me but when he is injured and going shorter distances and slower, I would rather not run with him. And my colleagues know I don’t like chatting at work, I am focused on my screen and my body language says don’t bother me. My mom knows not to talk to me when I am packing out her pills, my sister calls me for a chat only after confirming on WhatsApp that I am not busy.
I put all these “things” ahead of the people around me. And as Doc decided that is not the person he wants to be I am thinking maybe this is not the person I want to be. Maybe I want to be that person who always has time for anybody who needs my attention, and then catches up on the goal after the people’s needs have been addressed. That sounds like the type of person who can help to make the world a bit of a better place. Can I be that person? I am not sure, but I would like to give it a try.