Day 94 (2). Letting go

It feels like an anti-climax. Having almost reached the end of my walk and being stuck at a campsite because it is raining, sitting unadventurously inside the campsite restaurant drinking coffee and GrĂ¼ner Veltliner. Yesterday evening, in the toilet building where it was warm and where there was electricity, I tried to replan my route in a satisfying way after I saw pictures of the route I had planned to walk. It showed people hanging from almost vertical mountainwalls and ladders. Looking more closely at my map I also discovered that the markings for "mountain bike trail" are similar to the ones for "only for walkers with mountaineering experience". I had already wondered why there was a mountain biking trail in the middle of the mountains.
In fact I started a mountaineering course when I studied in Weimar but I don't think I can depend on C. when it comes to climbing. And another important factor for changing my plans: the mountain hut where I had planned to stay was open until yesterday but is now closed until the end of July.

I stared at my map for hours, tried to work out every possible route that isn't the quite easy one along some villages and wouldn't take more than a day but it seemed to be impossible. I like impossible, but after my last mountain hike I became a bit more cautious. Especially since the weather isn't too good these days. What to do? Yesterday evening I decided to wait for the next day and see from there.

Today is the next day and the rain keeps me here. It feels as if I reached my goal already. At first this thought made me sad, but sadness is a good emotion, one I learned to appreciate during the walk. Maybe I shouldn't worry about making my last days spectacular. Maybe I did indeed arrive already. Maybe I did every day.

I had planned to arrive at the Nomadic Village on Sunday evening. This Sunday, July 13. It might be an even bigger anti-climax. The big football finale. The most important thing on earth .....
When I read a Nomad's message saying that she wanted to be on time at Hohe Wand to watch the football match I wondered if I should change my plans. Arrive Monday morning instead. Or Sunday afternoon. It makes me question myself. Do I want an audience when I arrive? Is it important? Last year, when I arrived at the Nomadic Village in the south of France, I hadn't planned anything, I walked all day through the mountains, a difficult walk, a beautiful walk and when the evening fell I could see the village of Cuges les Pins already but it still took a long time to walk there. Before I arrived at the field where the nomads had gathered I sat at a bench in the center of Cuges for a while to land. Then I walked into the Nomadic Village where everybody had just finished their diner and was still sitting at the flying kitchen tables. I think they applauded but maybe it is a false memory, I am not sure. What I remember clearly is an enormous big bear, leaning against a tree inbetween the tables. I am sure about that. And how I seated myself and ate and everybody went back to their conversations and suddenly I was part of a group and how easy and normal it felt.

For a while, thinking about my arrival this time, I told myself I would like a welcome like last year, an audience, not necessarily an applause, I don't care about applauses but apparently I do care about being seen. And maybe I should, as a performer, but I also want to be a performer who shouldn't.

When I started to think about arriving, I thought diner time would be the best time for a proper welcome, last year it was a coincidence, this year I could plan it. And since it would be a pity to wait until Monday evening, even though more people would be there, reading that a lot of people would be there on Sunday evening already, I planned my arrival for Sunday evening, not too early. Ninish maybe. I never thought about football of course.

As always, circumstances force me to look at my own motivations and question them. Yes, I should care about an audience, calling myself a performer but my audience is there all the time already. All I need to do is be there. Somewhere. And the arrival has happened already. It did every day.

So let's just leave tomorrow if the weather permits it and see what the road brings me on my last walking day, days, one, two or three. Listen to my gut feeling, not to my ego. Follow my feet, talk to people, arrive when it is time to arrive. It can't be planned. Not when I am serious about what I am doing.

"So I lift from my shoulders the burden of time and, at the same time, that of the performances that are required from me. My life is not something that we have to measure. Neither the jump of the deer nor the sunrise are performances. Neither is a human life a performance, but something which grows and tries to reach perfection. And whatever is perfect does not accomplish out performances: what is perfect works its way quietly."

(Stig Dagerman, from "Our need of consolation is impossible to satisfy.")

(today's thoughts are for Anne and Geert, I promised them I would walk with them through the mountains and I can't keep my promise but the intention was there and the mountains are there, they are all around the campsite, it is situated beautifully in the middle and my longing to be there, to walk there  might be more important than the real walk would have been)

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