20.03.22 — Journal

Wandering Around La Pedriza

Well, I had my last blog post out in record time, but this time I’m breaking records thanks to how late I am to post it! As I’ll get into in later blog posts, it’s been a crazy few weeks, so I’m just getting some time to sit down and bring you this quick update with some lovely photos.

A whole month ago now I, along with three colleagues, headed up to the outskirts of Madrid in order to spend the day wandering around La Pedriza. I’ve been to this mountain range a good few times now since discovering it with Cake Club back in 2018, and it’s always a great chance to get away from the busy city life and catch some rays whilst walking around the gorgeous scenery.

This was all part of proving to myself that one of my various New Year’s resolutions, namely my daily goal of walking 10,000 steps, was having some kind of effect. After struggling to complete some fairly easy walks during Christmas in the UK, I decided that it was time I got a bit more active, so this daylong wander was to try out how I was getting along – I’m happy to report that I got along just fine!

We started off with a bus ride up to Manzanares El Real, where we grabbed some snacks (healthy ones, of course) before heading on our way to begin our great walk around the dramatic mountainous scenery. We had a good laugh along the way, with the thought of a beer at the midway point keeping our spirits up!

Just after this selfie of the four of us, I found an excellent stick, which I then used as my walking aid/fashionable accessory to make me look like Rafiki from the Lion King. This didn’t last all too long though, as I wound up forgetting to pick it back up after leaving it outside the bar that we eventually stopped in for a drink and some freshly fried croquettes.

Lunch over, we then waited in the painfully long queue to go to the toilet, during which time I met an excellent friendly cat whose photo I will include below. More than focussing on the walk and the sights that surrounded us, we’d been talking about all sorts of things – putting the world to rights in between talking about some of the projects that we’ve been working on together.

This guy was sat atop a wall and knew how to pose for the camera.

From there we powered on, our energy renewed both by the fried delights and the lovely surroundings of a rocky valley that we were now heading through on our way back to the bus stop. I’d brought my big bulky yellow coat with me and a bottle of water that I’d slung into its pocket, so I had that knotted around my chest, something which didn’t help when it came to navigating the precarious slopes of the side of the valley…

The sights from up in the mountains outside Madrid are fabulous.

Once out of the valley and back on tarmac, we completed the last leg of the journey with what was remaining of our waning energy. The bus ride back to Madrid proper always presents the temptation of a quick nap, but I managed to stay awake – I’d things to do when I got back home!

With over 24,000 steps done, I’d say that our little trip up to La Pedriza was a great success – and it’s a good job I got some excess steps in the bank, as the week later was quite a busy one which didn’t leave me with much time to hit my step goal every day.

More on that in my next post, however. For now I’ll leave you with this excellent photo of Julia, me, and Inés as we make out like we’re three ladies going on a power walk around a Californian suburb…