Let me start this post by saying that I will probably remember yesterday as the day that (almost?) broke me. My leg hurt, my whole body ached, it was overcast for the 400th time, I was tired and cranky and unmotivated. For anyone who follows through and watches the movie Alex puts together this fall, look for when I’m crouching in the car having a breakdown because my feet are swollen to disgusting proportions and are covered in an itchy red rash that no amount of Benadryl spray can help. That was yesterday; and it wasn’t pretty.
We found a beautiful hotel with a 20€ discount and free breakfast, ate our bread and cheese, and went to sleep.
And then today went from good to better to awesome. At breakfast, the owners of the hotel, Hotel Valery in Montelier told us they had spent the night reading the blog etc and gave us the room AND the breakfast on the house! Then they sent us off with a little lunch box of fresh croissants and a heap of local cherries and other goodies. They were so sweet 🙂
I settled into my run and managed to run my pretty normal routine, just at a slower pace so as not to pull anything too forcefully in my calf. The run was BEAUTIFUL and I ended in some small mountains with giant ones surrounding us on all sides. Their summits disappear into the clouds and as hard as I know the Alps will be I am happy to be in the mountains again.
I finished with 32.5 miles, right smack in front of a 5 star camping village with chalets as well as tent spots, and a pool and market and incredible views. Alex and I took it as a sign that I ended right at their doorstep (I ended in the mountains in the middle of a climb…very rare to find an entire lodging village out here!) So we went in, did our spiel, and Laticia at the desk said right away, yes of course, absolutely, and handed us keys to a 4 person chalet on the mountainside.
Not believing our luck, we walked away in giggles towards our car, where we were met by Sarah from the UK. She had just overheard our conversation, stepped out to Google us, and wanted to come say hi and wish us luck! I don’t want to sound vain here, but someone googled us! So cool! We talked to her for a while about our trip and learned she has been traveling all around Europe for the past year. It was such a sweet experience to meet her and just the fact that we were able to connect so quickly in conversation has me hitting my head for not learning better French before coming here. I think it would open so many doors for us just in terms of communication and meeting people and sharing stories. But in all the preparation beforehand, lots of times it just came down to needing all extra time for training. Next time!
After settling in at the chalet, we got a knock at the door from Sarah, who had come to deliver a donation and a nice note of encouragement. So awesome! We had thought the day couldn’t get any better and then boom, more awesomeness 🙂
So everyone out there who helped me see that yes, tomorrow is always a new day, THANK YOU. It is so very true. And I am sure I’m going to need to hear that again sometime on this trip, so please don’t hesitate to remind me when I whine about the tough days 🙂
Photos: the Alpe D’huez super difficult stage starts in Gap, and I saw this sign today – yikes. Should I take it as a sign? Also check out the crazy field of tennis ball flowers, and was Chopin from France?