I’ve been putting off writing this blog post since Wednesday morning when I knew I would have to write it. Which ultimately has made it even more difficult to do. Unfortunately I’ve come down with a rather large ill. It came upon me on Thursday and I attempted to battle on. I made it through the bank holiday weekend with the the procurement of a variety of tablets and potions by my mother and some how fought on till Tuesday.
Tuesday was my ultimate breaking point. I forced myself to put one foot in front of the other despite my internal agony, inability to think straight and rising fever. I struggled to maintain a pace of 2km an and spent most of the day in tears and utter anguish. It was when I realised that I was barely making 1km an hour something had to give. I phoned for my rescue amidst desperate sobs barely able to speak. Somehow I dragged myself to Pwll Deri YHA were a lovely german couple let me in fed me a cup of tea and I promptly fell asleep on a table.
After a series of doctors appointments and test, one where they stole my blood. Less than happy about that I’ve been told I can’t walk until Monday at the earliest. At the moment I still find myself incredibly fatigued. A simple walk to the Drs wipes me out for hours and I cant seem to battle this bug. Hopefully by Monday I’ll be fighting fit and back to action.
But for my walk this means some seriously alterations in plans. I’m certain now I wont reach the end of the path before the end of my unpaid leave. This means that I will have to come back to finish and I’m bloody well damned to do so. Even if it takes every spare day I have between now and Christmas. The upside to this is that I can take away some of the pressure to complete massive days and I can walk as far as I feel able.
As I’m sure you can imagine this is a massive disappoint to me. But, I will still do what I set out to achieve. Just in a slightly different way. But for now looking after myself has to be a priority.
In what I frequently fondly refer to Schrodinger’s walk as I’m both perpetually busy but also somewhat doing nothing. Through my time in sections 4 and 5 I found myself all together either too busy or too exhausted to post an update. So you’ll have to excuse this retrospective view and my somewhat hazy recollection.
I stormed my way through Meirionnydd and Ceridigion. These short sections helped me to forge my way down the coast in a week. The path is is direct and there less headlands and bays than other sections. Not a satisfying dent in the mileage but a satisfying dent in the map.
The other bonus of this section is that Meirionnydd is home. With this in mind I knew I friends houses to look forward to and the great delight of a night in my own bed and an opportunity to catch up with friends. Nothing quite spurs your on like the knowledge of home (and a G&T).
The path through Meirionnydd is less than arduous and took what felt like next to no time to complete, starting in Penrhyndeudraeth and finishing in Borth. Encompassing Portmeirion, Shell Island, the Dyfi Estuary and a nudist beach along the way.
Ceridigion was an entirely different battle. So as it turns out signposting for the path in Ceridigion is less than brilliant here I spent a good amount of time looking at the map and being all together confuse. Ceridigion has it’s own coast path and uses way markers and signage for that with only a smattering of reference to the WCP. This is particularly interesting when what appears to be the path and sign leads you to part way up a rather large cliff which you and your rather large rucksack then proceed to scale mostly on your hands and knees deeply aware of the fact that if anything you’re holding onto breaks you’re probably going in the sea. As you can tell, my mission was a success and I managed to avoid falling into the sea.
The coast path in Ceridigion passes through a number of sleepy coastal villages many of which I’m sure are lovely spots to stop if you have the time. One I did stop in was Llangranog the halfway point of the path. I’d resolved that from my ridiculous budget I deserved a treat so flopped out of the wind into a cafe in hope of a cup of tea. Well I got rather a lot more than I had hoped for there. A couple of ladies were enjoying there cake recognised me from seeing me walking earlier. I told them about my challenge and was duly reward with the most amazing slice of carrot cake and a cup of tea. Budget in tact and belly extremely satisfied an excellent way to mark halfway.
One place I was taken with on my journey through Ceridigion was Aberporth a beautiful and friendly little village. Here has definitely made the list of places I want to revisit and the sightings of cetaceans in the area definitely helped that.
My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.
– Maya Angelou