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Thursday, September 24 – Day 18

I slept well again. As well as I have been. I’ve been having un-restful dreams for the past week or so. Ever since I had a rest in Figeac. Probably because I’m worried about time and distance. My host entertained me at breakfast, and I was much later leaving than I’d wanted to. We had trouble getting today booked, so I had to go a lot farther than I’d wanted to. I was hoping to have a smaller day to see how it was with the lung thing, but I ended up having to go 27k.

As I was getting ready to go, I realized that I had no idea where my hiking poles were. Cyrille said he didn’t remember me having them when I came in. I thought maybe I left them at the restaurant, but I distinctly remember getting them at the restaurant. As I walked out the scary door, I realized that I had propped them up to the side as I used the call button on that first day, and I left them on the street. I’m sure someone came along and snatched them up.

I’ve been wondering all along if they were worth it and made any difference. Now that I’ve been unable to use them for a day, I think the answer is yes. I really missed using them on the uphills. I’ve been surprised at how well my knees have been holding out, and I guess it’s because of the poles. I will have to get some new ones as soon as I can. Ah well. That’s another thing to add to my list. Sometimes you don’t know how much you’ve relied on something until it’s gone.

The walk out of Cahors was another foggy one. The bridge was beautiful. The climb out of the valley was very steep, but thankfully short. There were actual stone steps to climb, and they were huge. A few times I had to put my hands down on the stairs to pull myself up. Not very practical, and very difficult with a backpack.

I felt like I was doing pretty well. The breathing burned a bit, but there wasn’t a whole lot of coughing. I’m grateful I’m not super congested as well. I’ve never had anything like this before, with it only being in my chest. Any time I did cough, though, it hurt like the dickens.

Thankfully, once I got out of Cahors, the rest of the day was reasonably flat. There were a few elevation changes, but for 27k, it was a fairly easy day. I was grateful for that.

I went through some more forest up a mountain, then through some farm type land stuff, then back into the scrub. The landscape is definitely changing. Today was sunny and hot. It was probably only low 70s at the very most, but compared to what the weather has been, that’s hot.

I didn’t feel particularly fatigued at all, so that was good. But as the day went on, and it got hotter, and the landscape got drier, my throat burned with every breath. Swallowing water hurt. It was so dry.

The sign posts out here aren’t always very accurate when it comes to distances. I passed a sign that said a town was 5k away. 25 minutes later I passed another sign that said it was now 4k away. It was a flat road. There’s no way that’s accurate.

Unfortunately I passed a sign for a convent. It’s not directly on the path, so I didn’t even notice it as an option. It’s 1.6k off trail. It’s too bad I didn’t notice it when I was booking.

I finally got to Grizou, and the gîte. The place is almost brand new and very modern. It’s so nice! The man said the woman I was supposed to share with wasn’t coming, so it is very likely I will have the room to myself tonight. Yay!

I sound sick. My voice is all gravelly, and sometimes it doesn’t work very well. Now that I’ve had a shower and stopped walking, I’m coughing quite a lot. I’m planning on taking another rest day on Sunday, when I get to Moissac.

I think I might also have a small fever. Earlier I was shivering under 3 blankets, and at dinner Elizabeth (another Elizabeth!) said I felt warm.

Tomorrow is 18 or 20k, so I think everyone is planning on sleeping in a little. Breakfast isn’t until 8,

Dinner was delicious, again. It really makes me shake my head at that place in Monistrol d’Allier. What were they thinking with spaghetti?

The first course was carrot and parsnip soup, then chicken with vegetables and rice, and some stuffing stuff, and a leek. That’s the first time I’ve eaten a boiled leek. Dessert was some kind of apple or pear tart. I don’t know what it was, but it tasted good.

I meant to get a picture of the people at dinner, because everyone was quite lovely, but I forgot. We’ll blame it on the illness.

My throat feels better and softer after not walking for a while. Hopefully no crazy dreams tonight.

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3 Comments

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  1. Good to know the poles work! Will it be hard to find new ones?
    Good luck! I had a bronchial thing at the beginning of August and spent a lot of time in bed.

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  2. I know that on the Appalachian trail people can mail things to certain post offices or small stores up ahead on the trail, and then they can pick them up when they get there. Is there any way to do this in your situation?

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  3. Will it be hard to get new poles? Hope you can relax this evening!

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