After the dust has settled following our Camino Journey which finished earlier this month, we've finally had a chance to reflect on the trip.
As always whenever we return from a Journey there is a lot to sort through, so even though the cycling stops we are still very busy.
Now we have sorted out the administration side of things, we can happily reminisce and reflect.
As those who were following on Facebook and Instagram would've seen, the trip was great fun. Everyone on the Journey managed to ride the entire distance, there was no injury or mishaps, and we all toasted with champagne at the end!
During our celebratory meal at the end I asked everyone which was their favourite day on the trip, and what was their low point?
Everyone had a different favourite day along the route.
For me it was the day arriving into Pamplona. It had such variety. Crossing over into Spain and meandering through small picturesque villages, onwards to a rewarding climb with epic views, over the other side the descent descended into thick mud and then smooth asphalt, onto a hilarious lunch thanks to a very entertaining waiter, we then had a luxurious gradual descent overlooking the sun-kissed Navarra region, and finally experienced all the Camino hype as we entered Pamplona.
If this was my Groundhog Day I would be pretty happy!
Great views throughout the Rioja region in Spain
When I asked the group what their low point was, between us all, only one individual could muster up one episode during the entire Journey which they classed a low point. During an 800m vertical ascent in 40 °C she found it understandably quite tough - however, she did admit it gave her the best views of the trip as well!
I am incredibly proud that after 2000km riding across 20 days in three countries, there was one 'low' episode.
This a real testament to the positive mind-set of all the riders, and why we all had such fun on the trip.
While on tour we had one day where it rained all day. Not just a spitting, but hard heavy rain. Thankfully for me I was warm and dry as I drove the support vehicle. It should have been a miserable day for those riding, but throughout the whole day morale never dipped. 125km of poor visibility and being completely soaked would test even the strong. However, when I asked if this was a low point, they responded that upon arriving into Orléans and seeing the impressive Cathedral, their appreciation of this magnificent structure was made even sweeter given the effort needed to get there.
A great always end with a Champagne toast!
Which brings me to my main point for this blog;
A bad day cycling, beats a good day at the office.
Now replace the word 'cycling' with any hobby you enjoy. Travel? Playing Guitar? Designing clothes?
Now replace the phrase 'day at the office' with your current job or lifestyle situation which you do not enjoy. Data inputting, commuting, attending meetings - whatever you currently dislike from your life right now.
Is there a way to make the balance of your life include more of what you love?
What do you want to do with your time, where do you want your stories to be created from?
The individual who rightly found the ascent tough, felt that it gave her confidence on tackling bigger hills when she gets back to UK. One of the riders in France ruined their meal when they accidently ordered Andouillette - a local sausage made of cow or pig intestines, which has a rather acquired strong offal taste, he was gutted his meal was ruined, but happy with the entertainment is bought everyone else, and we laughed about it for the rest of the trip.
Earning the views along the Camino
Sometimes the 'bad' times can result in some of your best times. These times of hardship and misfortune, are what build character, and help develop stories worth telling. Don't worry of what could go wrong, be excited of what could go right. Don't worry if you going through a low, it will soon become a high. However you should worry about doing nothing.
Not experiencing life, and not creating stories is no way to live.
Nobody wants to be that individual whose only dinner conversation is mundane information regarding the local council tax fluctuations.
Everyone wants to be the individual with stories which they are proud to tell, and have others begging to hear more!
When your time comes to an end on this beautiful planet of ours, you want to have an endless fountain of impressive, hilarious and heart warming stories from all the adventures you found yourself on. Don't end up regretting missed opportunities - go create some stories.
Comment below your favourite day cycling, your most gnarly of climbs, or the most satisfying descents you have experienced. Inspire others with your epic stories to get up and get going!