So, it is 3 pm here at camp. We look a bit like the walking wounded as folks hobble across the dusty ground to the loo, or to the camp fire to get hot water for hot food, or as they stumble out of the medical tent, feet taped, padded and strapped.
It is official, we are filthy and there is a pungent smell of sweat every so often. It’s a relaxed atmosphere as the memory of the pain from yesterday’s slog fades into pleasant memory.
Everyone is comparing notes on how they fared, or which bit was the worst. It was a hot day and blisters were in abundance. I admit that my feet, whilst not pretty, are not too bad… a few drilled toenails to release the fluid trapped underneath, but otherwise I have fared quite well.
The images of yesterday’s run are still extraordinary. It has been an extraordinary week – the landscape and terrain has been almost indescribable. Yesterday it felt like we crossed several planets, each with its own unique surface. If I come across more salt flats anytime soon though, it will be too soon!
The gods have been in my favour – 2 of the 4 “crisp packet” air mattresses in my tent have died a punctured death – nothing to do with me!
Sandy dust is everywhere – none of our clothes are clean. Boys of the MDS, I’m sure you miss that straw like hair, dry skin, chapped lips, the dry meals and electrolyte drinks.
Thank you for the emails. Although they take a long time to come through, they have been great to read and to know that you have been following my plod through this crazy place.
We have just 8 km tomorrow morning into the town centre of Atacama – and then rest and relaxation.
I will write a full race report with photos on my return to UK. Watch this space…
So, from stinky me, covered in sand, dust, dry blood, sweat and some tears – I send you lots of love.