On Saturday, I was finally joined by another participant – Fiona from Ireland. I didn’t meet her until dinner. She is very nice and I enjoyed getting to know her while we were eating. It was funny because she looked around the dining room and commented on how empty it was. “Welcome to my world for the last week,” I told her.
Sunday was “the return to El Chorro”. Since I’ve already talked about last week’s visit to El Chorro, I don’t have much to add. Except, when we climbed up to the vantage point where we could see the gorge down below, I saw a vulture fly past the edge of the cliff -pretty much at eye level just as I got there. Of course, I didn’t have my camera out, but it was amazing to see. I did try to take some pictures from a new perspective.
The first gorge is to the left. Then this valley and the second gorge at the back center of the photo.
After we got back from El Chorro, for the rest of the afternoon I decided to take it easy. My favorite thing to do!
On Sunday evening we were joined by another participant at dinner. His name is Peter and he lives in Belgium, but is British. He is also very nice and has been interesting to talk to.
My happiness about having co-conspirators was deflated rapidly on Monday. After the warmup session -yoga – and breakfast, we gathered in the lobby for our hike. I had to go on my own hike with Noemi. We went to the same general area as I had just hiked the other day with David. I was a bit disappointed in the route -but we got the job done. We did park in a slightly different area on the edge of town and I was able to get a couple more town pictures.
This statue is just below the Santa Maria Plaza (the church up on the hill). Antonio told us during our walk around town that this statue represents the Muslims leaving the fortress after it fell to the Christians. He said that the “evicted” Muslims went to Granada (which was still Muslim territory). He said there’s still a neighborhood in Granada that has Antequera as part of the name – because thats where the refugees settled.
Our afternoon session was spin class again and a body weight workout. My two co-participants were getting their first experience with both. Fiona, who says she’s never been in a gym in her life, seems to have a great attitude about at least giving it a try. Peter, on the other hand, seems to be a bit surprised that, after signing up for boot camp, he is supposed to work out! Of course, he doesn’t have to do anything he doesn’t want to -it’s up to him to take advantage of what’s offered or not.
Mike has routinely (and probably a million times) asked me for years “What is wrong with you?” whenever he hears one of my latest wacky ideas. Yesterday, I had to ask myself that question for the first time ever. How do you know you’ve been at fit camp too long? When you’re thinking about taking a day off to go tour Malaga and then you decide not to go because you really don’t want to miss the treadmill session that day!
So instead of Malaga on Tuesday, it was the morning warmup of a walk around town. I was pretty pleased with myself when I ran up the stairs to the Santa Maria plaza – I was feeling frisky. I also learned a few new things about the town. One is that the partial foot/leg remains of a statue that stand on the Giant’s Arch (I shared a picture of that in my last post) is from a statue of Hercules that was broken during an earthquake. I didn’t bring my camera today because I’d already taken so many pictures. So, of course, the door was ajar to the bull ring and we got to sneak in and take a look. Antonio snapped a couple of pictures of us in action. Here’s me snooping in the bull ring.
Then Noemi was deputized once again to lead me on a bike ride. I felt better than I did on Saturday when I rode with her and we did almost 25 miles in pretty good time. We rode to a nearby town called Mollinos. It was a bit strange because it seemed like it was very closed up and not much activity on the street. Nothing made me want to get the camera out. The route was much the same as it has been – zigzagging our way out and back through a mishmash of service roads, farm tracks, roads -etc.
The afternoon brought the much anticipated treadmill session -53 minutes/about 3.5 miles and another workout class with weights.
My last hike with Sendero Sun was to El Torcal. This is a park at the top of the mountain outside of town. I visited the “back side” of it last week, but this time we actually drove up through the official park entrance. El Torcal is pretty interesting. About 150 million years ago there was a sea in the area and because of plate tectonics, over time, the seabeds got pushed up into a small mountain range. The rock is limestone and has been carved into crazy shapes by erosion and by the results of freezing/thawing action. Of course David wasn’t going to take us on the tried and true park trails. It was a bit misty up there so my pictures are a bit dark. It was sort of cool to see it in those conditions- but the pictures are better when the sun is shining.
You know you’re in trouble when the signposts don’t even have anything written on them! Which way is which?
That was my last hike with Sendero Sur. I chose to only do the spin class in the afternoon -skipping the next workout so that I could pack. I felt like it was the last day of school…I didn’t want to get anything done!
Amazing to realize that the two weeks have flown by and I’m heading home tomorrow. My final results consultation revealed less body fat, more muscle and no weight loss. I’m disappointed about the no weight loss, but there are so many other good things that came from my time here, that I don’t want to dwell on that.
This evening I decided to have my farewell beer. Fiona sat with me and had a coffee. We really had a fun conversation – and of course, my waiter friends were wishing me a safe trip and asking when I was coming back. Who knows? As I walked through the lobby, I spotted the owner and told him I was on my way home and he said… “Nos vemos”, which means “We’ll see each other again.” Then he said the next vacation my husband and I had that he hoped we’d want to come back. With that -and a friendly hug… it was back to the room to finish packing, do a FaceTime call with Mike and get to bed. My chariot to the airport leaves at 6:30 AM!
I have to say this trip was a lot of work -but also really fun. There’s a special place in my heart for Andalucia. I look forward to visiting again.
Categories: Antequera Part 5