Friday, 2 November 2007

STEPH Tirana to Tivat 31/10/07

This morning we wake to rattling thunder reverberating around us. It’s a dark and grey day and we get an unhurried late start, mainly because we’ve got internet access right where we are.

By midday we’re sipping cappuccinos in lieu of hot chocolates while we have brekkie (yep, bread and cheese, chocolate and mandarins) and soon after, with a new map in hand, the old one left behind a couple of days ago in a pizza bar, we’re on the road.

The rain holds off and it’s surprisingly warm. The best news for me is that my pack is finally feeling lighter! The last couple of days it’s been so heavy, as if the straps are two hands pulling down on my shoulders with all their might. Amazing, isn’t it? There’s nothing extra in it, no noticeable changes in my physical capabilities . . . yet there you go, out of the blue the pack’s heavy and impossible to strap on properly. And then, hallelujah, it’s not!

Within a couple of kms we meet a no-footpath, no-end-in-sight tunnel, so it’s up and over the hill for me. Ben waits to see if I make it over. It was a lovely breathless scurry through the bush, straight up a small track to a magnificent view of the coastline back towards Herceg Novi. He can’t resist and follows me over.

An hour later we find what Ben has been drooling for ever since we landed on Adriatica’s eastern shoreline – pig on a spit. We’re in time, on time, in luck – it’s shriveled up, probably not pig and ready to be eaten.

While he’s in lamb heaven, I’m in chip heaven. Frozen food entrepreneurs will have a field day when they discover Crna Gora (or Crne Gore, depending on your vowel preference) still has good old-fashioned bloody delicious greasy homemade chips. These are pre-trans fat days and jeez they’re good.

We hit the road again and the thunder makes good its promise – it pisses down for the rest of the day. It’s lovely walking along in the rain, knowing we’re in for a warm bed as soon as we’ve crossed the inlet on a ferry, about 10kms up the road.

That said, one of the most dangerous things a pilgrim can do is make assumptions about what’s up ahead . . .

. . . all is well.

We’re warm. Not particularly fed. We’re content.

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