Crossing the Pyrenees - Robert de Boer

Crossing the Pyrenees

Embalse de Mediano - Spain ,  October 2016


Driving in the valley of the Pyrenees, I see the big mountains on the left, covered with snow and clouds gathered around them. I stop along the road for a minute to take in the scenery. I imagine myself up there, being nothing. Just a being, who could never build something like that on its own, nor with the help from others. Being there makes you realise that we don't own the world, but we can only be grateful for being part of it. Clouds move, I have to move again.

After driving a little more it is time to find a place to sleep. Wide landscape sceneries around me, little roads leading to little villages. Acres are being prepared for the winter season, the afternoon sun is shining on them and the temperature is starting to drop. 4 degrees it is right now and I found a good spot to camp out. The Chateaux catches the last sun of the day and I watch it as I eat something. I open the window for some fresh air. It is completely silent, the smell of grass and woods finds its way into the car, slightly damped from the sun hitting the cold earth. It is the smell of nature. It's time go to bed, I close the curtain, but I am still able to watch the stars above me. I close my eyes and crawl up to be warm.

The next morning I wake up to make my way in to Spain. The scenery around me is changing as I get closer to Spain. The green landscape are making place for more rocky and dry landscapes. Finally, almost at the top, a long tunnel will bring me to Spain. As I exit the tunnel and drive down the Pyrenees, landscapes are changing rapidly and the temperature is increasing. The landscape more or less turns into dessert. Though still rocky, it is completely different compared to the French side.

Driving along the Embalse de Mediano I suddenly see a spot I have to go to. As I find somewhere to park along the road, I put on my hiking shoes and grab all my gear. I was excited, so I rapidly made my way thru the bushes and climbed some hills. It was even greater then I expected it to be. It was completely silent around me, no birds, no cars and hardly any wind. I instantly felt at home as I sat down. Thoughts of the past days drifted thru my head. Realising where I was, I felt immense grateful. Sitting there all alone puts things in perspective and made me realise how small we are in this world and how grateful I am to be amongst such beautiful surroundings.


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