Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Dream Walking (Part 3)

October 12, 2001
Carrion de los Condes- Sahagun (hot/muggy)
26.9m/43.0km - 237.8m/391.6km

Today I had a meltdown. This was the hardest day yet. We are still walking through what seems to be endless plains and the air is so clear distances can be deceiving. My period started yesterday and add that to a cold plus hurting feet and you have the definition of misery. I was doing fine until the last 4.5m/7km.

I am walking so slow B and J are at least a quarter of a mile ahead of me. I can see them but I cannot seem to catch up to them. I feel like Alice in Wonderland, moving as fast as I can but getting nowhere. Pretty soon B and J are so far ahead I can no longer see them, and when I look around I see there is not a living soul in any direction. No people, no animals, just land. I am frightened because although I am walking by myself I am not walking alone. I am surrounded by ghosts. I can feel them brushing by me in both directions as I walk. I can hear the mummer of their voices. What the hell is going on? I want off this path as soon as possible. I walk faster. After a bit the sensation of being surrounded by other people passes. I now have B and J within sight.

I just want to stop walking. I want to quit. I want to lie down on the ground and curl up into a ball. Why don't B and J stop and wait for me? Don't they care about me anymore? Don't they understand how hard this is for me? The more I think about it the more unhappy I am. I am throwing myself a good size pity party here; all that is missing are the balloons. I want to cry but when I try no tears come just a feeling of weariness.

After a while I am no longer mad at B and J. It's not their fault I am stuck out here walking in the middle of nowhere. It's God's fault. I didn't want to come here. I didn't ask to be here. I don't even know why I am here. The more I think about it the angrier I get. The angrier I get the harder it is to walk. The weight of my anger presses down on me, and with each step I take the weight gets heavier and heavier. I have to get this weight off me before it crushes me. I stop and scream at the sky. I scream at God.

"God d**n you! I hate you! I don't want to be here you b*****d! F**k you! I hate you! Why did you make me come here! I didn't ask for this! F**k you! F**k you"!

I look around on the ground for rocks to throw but I can't find any so I yell one final f**k you and then stand there looking up at the sky. Slowly I come back to my surrounding and feel a great sense of peace and relaxation. After standing there for a minute I start walking again. I feel lighter and each step is a little easier and almost bearable. I plod on until I reach the edge of Sahagun where B and J sit waiting for me.

We walk, strung out one behind the other like beads on a string (B first, then J, then me), up the street that leads to the refugio. I am walking with my head down and concentrating on putting one foot in front of the other when I hear a voice screeching up ahead. I look up and see a very tiny old woman standing in the middle of the sidewalk and screeching at B while pointing up the street. As B gets nearer to to the old woman she steps out into the street and makes a wide half circle detour around her, while nodding her head at her. The whole thing is so bizarre I start laughing. I cannot understand a word of what the woman is saying. It does not sound like any language I have ever heard.

She turns, and seeing J, starts screeching at him, and when he gets close to her he also steps out into the street and makes a half circle detour around her while nodding his head. I am laughing so hard at this I feel myself rising out of my body. My spirit-self floats above, with only the spirit-toes of my left foot touching my right shoulder keeping me connected to the rest of my body. As I float there I realize that the reason I cannot understand what the woman is saying is because she is really a cat and the strange language she is speaking is cat. This thought frightens me and and I feel my spirit-self sink back into my body.

When I reach the woman I am looking straight into her face. How can this be? She is only about four feet tall and I am five feet five inches. I should be looking down at her. I say, "Buenos tardes", but she ignores me and then, very quickly, her eyes flick sideways at me and then away. She knows. She knows I know she is a cat. That's why she won't look at me. I walk away with a feeling of satisfaction about not being fooled by her.

The refugio in Sahagun is in the Church of La Trinidad upper floor. The lower floor is an event center. The upper level is divided into cubicles that sleep eight. Each cubicle has four sets of bunk beds, two buck beds set end to end on each wall of the cubicle. They are all enclosed on three sides like railway bunks. There is a large storage area for backpacks at the rear and the first thing J does is string a line across it so we can hang laundry. The next thing he does is head for the showers. He is back within two minutes and seething. The French girls are here. He just met one of them leaving the shower area. How can that be? We saw them this morning in a bar as we were leaving Carrion de los Condes. They never passed us. How did they get here before us? J says the girl told him some story about catching a ride on an airplane. I start laughing. All that agony for nothing.


Blue Witch said...

I'm so enjoying the re-run.

Could you  just explain a bit about the numbers at the top, please?

la peregrina said...

The first set of numbers are how far I walked  that day in miles and kilometers. The second set of numbers are the total number of miles and kilometers I had walked since leaving St. Jean.   So, on October 12, 2001 I walked 26.9 miles/43.0 kilometers and since leaving St. Jean I had walked 237.8 miles/391.6 kilometers.  That was a long day and we walked that far to get away from two French girls who were very annoying but, as we found out at the end of the day, it did not work.

la peregrina said...

Oh, and I was so focused on answering your question I forget to say that I am glad you are enjoying the rerun. :)

Ally Bean said...

Blue Witch asks a good question.  I was wondering, too.  

"<span>I start laughing. All that agony for nothing.</span>"  Perfect summation of a trying day.  

Blue Witch said...

Of course, it makes sense now!  Thanks.