After my 2-week hiatus, an almost enforced break from training and climbing, time mostly dedicated to my thesis (although with exceptions for Gore-Tex allowed :), now I am back into the routine of getting myself up to shape again. I started off the wrong foot already - warming up on Bauhaus on Wednesday, although going 2nd, somehow managed to pull my left hand finger on the first route of the day, to screw my tendon right from the start. Yes, it's been a while, they tendons took much damage, they took even campusing for 6 months without too much complaining and without Radiosalil for some time now. But it is that time of the year again, time to be motivated and stupid, stupid and motivated. So there we go again - ice, heat, Radiosalil, and no, no, no, I do not want to stop n rest...
Anyway, whining aside, after not being able to solve the last move on Rescate Emocional, awesome, well-named 7b+ on Paret Gran, I lowered the objectives again, and went to the church. The sacred place, St Benet. Nothing like it, you might travel, you might roam. Nothing like it, it is a honor to live just below, for a while, a very transient while, but I feel I somehow participate in the mystery of the place, in my own little and insignificant way. I tried talking about it to Shantala, to Delphine, during both days, trying to transfer the sacredness, the beauty of the place. Not sure I succeeded, but I continue believing, I continue worshiping, saying my little prayer to the Mother Mountain. Coming back, again and again. It is beautiful, it is mysterious, and it is not only about the mist, the clouds that take possession naturally and quickly of the Gorro tops. It is not only about the landscape, about the absence of civilization - or its flagrant presence with tourist kleenex everywhere over the trails. It is not only about the refuge, about Angel trying to fit into Ferran's role, about Santi giving us laurel leaves and tea flowers, sharing recipes for olive oil with rosemary. It is not only about the routes, the moves, the flying feeling of weightlessness up above. It is not only about flying off the wall and soaking into the scenery, mingling with the Elephant trunk, the Mummy, the old dead French soldiers, and the burros caring food for the monks up the endless stairs into the galaxy. It is all of it, the whole, that is both smaller and bigger than the parts. It is St Benet, one and only, the unique one.
I remember, I do not go for grades here - I go to climb a route, and this time the route was K Monos Somos, a piece of art in the pleasurable windy and shady Panxa del Bisbe. After painfully getting to the anchor for the first time, I realized this was it, a route i needed to get my motivation going, to get my inspiration in, to feel the air below me, to use the newly gained strength, to try out my pull-up training I've been doing for a while now, to get the resistance back. After the first run-out scary (supposedly 5+ the guidebook says) pitch, two bolts of warm-up on slightly overhanging ground, the business starts with the next two bolts. First boulder sequence going for a left-hand stone, get the feet up and a dynamic move to the right-hand open-mouthed hold. Short rest, then left-hand crimp, get feet very very high, drop-knee, and go for the white marble stone, the crux. If you get it, it is not time to celebrate yet - after a painful clip, there are still a couple of tense moves with ballerina feet to get to the next rest. Then another clip, and the final batman flight to the last jug. Despite careful inspection, I fail the technical sequence with the undercling after grabbing the white marble on my second go. I do not even manage to catch the marble on my next go.
Motivation is back. This route inspires me, it makes me think of Unicorni, of Ben Petat, of Calladeta, past or future projects, beautiful moves, precise footwork, reading the rock, only the right approach, the right mind will get you there. I call Delphine, we change plans, and here I am back again, second day. This time I put the draws in confidently, the moves are just soooo good. I need this bouldering strength, it is so good to have air underneath, to go, to fight the fear again, to have the adrenaline rush. I do a stupid mistake of feet on the next go - it was too good to be true, i was too strong. Down we go, woooosh. I rethink the strategy, recheck the feet. Next one is the good one, despite the usual self-doubt, the wishful thinking, the partner-trusting, I go up. I am weightless. This is the right go. Let's do it! What a route!!! Can't shut up about it on the way down, try to convince Par to come out and try it too, what a route! Maybe I will come back as well, another day, another year, a minute from now, a century away, for the neighbors on the left, they do look gooood too, although I like the names already less. I got my motivation back, St Benet, thank you, one and only, no hay nadie como tu!
To continue the training, despite rain forecast and tired forearms, training continues in Gelida. The sun is inescapable, it is sauna time, big contrast to St Benet. Warm and dusty. While Delphine struggles on the vertical terrain of the 6as that are pretty bouldery for the grade, I go for the old favorite, No HoSe. Been a while I came back to this one. Long-standing project. This time I am able to put up the draws all the way. But the rain is coming, we are the last ones left on the crag, JuanAn leaves along with others, only black clouds and swooshing wind remain with us. Pull the rope or second? I remember the storm in Collegats, the epic to get the draws down there a month ago. Let's second. With a quick rhythm and straight arms, I manage to reach the chain, get down the draws, and be done with another project. Although only on top rope, but i feel my strength slowly flowing back into the veins, the muscles starting to respond, the arms getting back into action, hardly-won endurance flowing along the blood-work of my body. I am ready, it is time for the projects again.
Four weeks left for projecting, in the meantime getting inspired by Nordic dreams - a picture from Jonas Wiklund, friends and cams waiting in the distance...:
Maybe will get to use them before going to Norway, say on some Southern face of a Mala mountain from Deta one day?..