My experiences with thru-hiking

The Finish Line!

Posted in Hiking GR5, 1500 miles across Europe by onefootatatime on September 6, 2009


Aug 15 2009

Aug 15 2009

It’s my last day on the trail, and I have mixed feelings. It was only four hours to Nice, two hours on a trail and two hours on road. When I saw the Mediterranean from a distance, I started beaming. I can’t exactly describe the joy, but I was feeling a little giddy. The Mediterranean is beautiful. I must say this is an incredible way to end this long journey. I’ve walked around 1500 miles across Europe, and I am mildly surprised that I made it, because I’m feeling a little numb. Must be all the feelings I’ve bottled up somewhere…I don’t know.

When I got to the center of Nice though I started freaking out a bit. The place was just crowded with tourists, like roaches. I made it all the way to the beach, and just hung around a bit. I really wanted to get the hell out of there. After the mountains, this was too much humanity for me to take. So I rushed to the train station to buy a ticket to Lausanne. After calling my parents, I called Ruth and left a message – I must have sounded weird. I called Romeer, and I told him I was on my way back to Lausanne.

I grabbed some Thai food and got into the train, and after I successfully squeezed my backpack into the overhead compartment, I turned around and started laughing. Getting onto the train was the French girl I bumped into and had dinner with a week ago at a refuge in Maljasset. She started laughing too when she saw me, because once again I didn’t know any French, and she didn’t know any English.

Even though I had a little mental freak-out in Nice, I felt better now. I thought there was no better way to end the GR5 trip than with a fellow GR5-er on my train ride back to Lausanne, even though we didn’t sit next to each other. She got off at Lyon and she asked the man next to me if he would be kind enough to translate something she wanted to tell me.

After she got off the train, the man smiled at me, raised an eyebrow and nodded in her direction.

Oh well.



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