After a cold stay in Foncebadón we were both eager and hesitant to leave. The rain had stopped, but a dense fog had taken its place, complete with occasional bone shivering gusts.
Up and away we went, continuing on the mountain towards the highest point on the Camino. The hope of a redemptively hot shower was the only incentive which could justify our movement further and further from last nights hot chai tea. It was enough hope to bring me to a slow jog with my pack on, at which point I realized that my jogging pace is the perfect match for Jeanie’s walking pace!
As we walked Jeanie seemed content to chat about directions, plans, and other trail thoughts. I saw her mouth moving but all I could focus on was the question of how SHE could possibly focus in this cold! At our first rest point, I jogged in place and danced around as she made the amused comment that she was actually perfectly comfortable! She said it was the first day that she had truly been fully prepared for the cold, and her doubled socks, scarf, gloves, hood, and multiple layers had been the perfect set up for the day.
Although it may seem like a minor detail, this is an especially important factor for someone with diabetes. Poor circulation is a common side effect of diabetes, and losing sensitivity in one’s hands or feet is a serious concern when it prevents the detection of harmful stimuli such as a dangerously hot or sharp object. Over the course of a twenty mile day, even a small rock in her shoe could lead to a gruesome end of day discovery if Jeanie had not felt it due to lacking common pain signals.
Overall, although it was a chilly start, the day was much more enjoyable for Jeanie due to her preparedness! A few steps in prevention pay huge dividends when they keep you coming through your efforts warm, comfortable, and healthy!