With an extra day to recover it was an ideal weekend to get back on the road and get a few more kilometres of the E10 under the belt. I am following this European long-distance path on its route through the Czech Republic from Varnsdorf on the northern border with former East Germany and Vyssi Brod on the southern border with Austria. Now about 100km south of Prague, Saturday's stage took me from near Zvikov to Pisek (pronounced pea-sek).
As I walked my mind slipped back into the groove of this walk, time away from home and working life. The sight of the signpost had prompted thoughts of what has happened in my life since I have been following the E10 when I started on that first stage from Varnsdorf back in May 2004. I've dabbled in other work but drifted back to teaching; in my more negative moments I would say that is because I follow the old adage, "Those who can do and those who can't teach". Blogging has taught me to be more positive, there is a pull towards this work and I have something to offer if I choose to listen to feedback offered to me.
Since the last stage I have had some back trouble so I was keen to see how this has affected my performance. Physically it has slowed me down and I get tired quicker but mentally I am more determined than ever to finish it. I learnt on this stage that a plodding approach can be just as effective as running at what lies in front of us and is certainly more invincible when you are tiring. With this thought I found myself at Krkavci Skala (Raven's Rock) overlooking a smaller river, the Lomnice, which the path follows upstream to cross.
The path made its way down to the river's edge and continued upstream to a recreation centre built during the communist era. Many organisations had these centres for their employees and families, a pity that most have been thrown out with the dirty bathwater of those years.
The path followed the river for less than a mile before climbing steeply up between the trees again. Plodding now kept me going, slowly but surer than ever; I was going to get , not only to Pisek, but one day also to the Austrian border. I thought why I am doing this; not questioning whether I should be, there is no question whether I should, I belong there, I have to do it. I will return to this on later stages for sure; it may be just sheer unadulterated cussedness, possibly escapism but there is certainly self-realisation in there. What exactly I mean by that there will be plenty of time to ponder if I continue to plod at this speed.
8 hours ago