I’m back again in glorious Devon, for the 4th time to try and climb my project. The whole process began so innocently all those years ago but over time has grown into a real monster. During my initial forays onto the route, I could never have guessed just how much of my time would be taken up by, and how big a part of my life this route would become. It has been at the front of my mind for the last few months, ever since I decided (possibly prematurely) that I was ready to lead it and all my plans, my whole life in fact, have been structured to fit around these trips down south.
If I had to choose one feeling that summed up these trips it would be frustration. But there have been little rays of sunshine that make it all bearable and ultimately, these experiences make me a better person. The most important thing I have learnt is how to accept situations for what they are and to be patient. Sometimes, no matter how much you want something, external forces out of your control just will not let it happen and it would be foolish to try to take them on.
Now to anyone reading this, that may sound like a very submissive outlook and to a point I would agree. But when your life is literally on the line, surely the smart money is on waiting until the cards are in your favour, or at least until you are playing on an even field. Whilst there is a certain allure being a hero, fighting against the odds and going out in a blaze of glory, my instincts for self-preservation is strong and I would rather live to fight another day.
Today is day number 4. Day 1 was spent stuck in traffic; Day 2 was cool but very humid making even the individual moves feel impossible. Day 3 was warmer but dryer and the idea of the lead sparked in my head until I heard a weather report for day 4 and decided to cut my losses and save my skin.
After a decent feed to re-fuel my tired body, day 4 dawned clear, cool and crisp. Is this what I have been waiting for?
Time will tell...