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J78 - Saturday, January 2: 3km before Alcocer – Marker 72 on the CM 2015

75.3km  10H18’
Altitude 1116m
Universal language?
This morning, an easy course and a Wi-Fi connection mean that I am now up-to-date with mail received last week.  It’s such a good feeling!
At the beginning of the New Year, I would like to thank Lee, who every day settles down to the sometimes arduous task of translating the daily log from French into English.  She is perspiring at the same rhythm as Serge and thanks to her work our non-French speaking friends can follow our adventures. (Note from Lee: English readers, don’t hesitate to let Laure know if you find these logs interesting)
On this subject, Sergio, who has just returned from the Trans 333 in Morocco, sent us an e-mail last night to tell us what a pleasure it was to run a few kilometers with Serge yesterday afternoon and he emphasized the fact that the two of them talk the same language (in spite of the fact that they were speaking English).  Naturally, he was talking about the foot race.
This sport, as simple as it is, has a universal language and I have become aware of it today.
It’s more and more difficult for Serge to get his body moving in the morning; His face is tired when he wakes up and it takes him time to get ready.  A few days ago, I pointed out that as the years pass he doesn’t recuperate as well (it’s a physiological fact).  His only response was an oblique glance.  The next day, at the end of the stage, which he achieved brilliantly, he said “You see, the old man isn’t dead yet”.
The route CM2015, which we have been on since Km 3, is like a desert. There is fog, then grayness but no rain.  At Villaneuva de Alcoron, we enter the natural park of Alto Tajo (Upper Tagus).  There is snow at the roadside and the white roofs of some houses lead us to believe that we will see snow rather than rain.  We are at an altitude of 800 to 1300 meters and continue our climb toward the Pyrenees.
For sometime Serge has talked about his lack of motivation on this race, not for lack of diversity of scenery and encounters but with reference to his progression.  “When I will be in Toulouse, at 800 km from Paris, I will have run almost 6600 km and will be so close to the point of departure….”  It’s one of the reasons he prefers not to mark his path on a map. Unfortunately, it is the principle of the loop, with all the turns and detours connected to program constraints in France, whereas in his previous crossings, he advanced from east to west on a daily basis.  So he has to find his motivation elsewhere!
Yesterday, we met Pablo of the « guardia civil » which corresponds, if we have understood correctly, to the state police in the USA.  He patrols the road.  He promised us that he would be at departure and indeed he and a colleague escorted Serge for the first 10 km.  Pablo is astonished by this race; he didn’t think it possible to run so many kilometers each day, he who took part in the bull running of Cuenca on New Year’s Eve.  They asked us not to publish photos of them on the website.  Serge asks for the video camera because he needs to be occupied.  This evening I ask him if he is bored on the road and if he finds the time long.  He said no but that he has to think about something other than his sore legs……
Tonight we will camp on the banks of the Rio Tajo (Tagus River).  The spot, as wild as it is beautiful, is an ideal place for us.  In spite of the invigorating cold, there is a cheerful atmosphere.  Finally, we had a day with no rain; let’s hope it lasts.

Tomorrow: Molina de Aragon – Monreal del Campo - Torrijo del campo (N211)

Town : Borne 72 CM 2015

GPS : N40.83124° W002.09828°