• Theresa Fersch

On the 3rd Day, She Rested

I woke up this morning feeling surprisingly ok. It seems the warming up and cooling down helps with soreness quite a bit. That said, 5 minutes into my morning class and I knew I needed a day of rest. I couldn’t hold my weight off the ground for more than 20 seconds at a time. As the others worked through class, I made a resolution to myself that while today is not a rest day, it will be for me. I told the others I was only going to watch class and I would not be taking surf lessons this afternoon. Yin and Sarah must have been feeling similar because as soon as I said I was taking the day off, they said they also needed the break. Kris and Jeilan are powerhouses. They couldn’t wait to get back into the water. But for me, that half mile walk carrying a massive surf board among all my other daily activities yesterday was just too much. 

We all had lunch together by the island but separated after. The two ladies went to surf lessons, the other two went to the beach and I walked home to get my bike. I figured while my upper body needed a rest, there was no reason I couldn’t bike. I road all the way to Peniche, admiring the sand dunes and old architecture. I stopped at the bike shop figuring today was a good day to return my bike since I don’t seem to have time or energy to use it anymore. The place was closed when I arrived, they were out giving surf lessons. So I went to a cafe with an outdoor bar down the street and had an Americano for 90 cents while I waited for the store to reopen. I laughed as I sat and watched surf students warm up on the beach. The instructors had them running all over and doing jumping jacks in their tight wetsuits. It looked silly but I also was relieved I wasn’t doing it today. This must be this class’s first lesson because they spent a lot of time lying on theIr boards in the sand getting instruction. I was fascinated to see this instructor taught a slightly different technique for getting up on the board. In my class, I was taught to move from lying down to standing in three distinct yet swift movements. These folks were taught to pop up in one movement. I liked that my instructor broke it down for us. I also noticed the waves are WAY smaller here!! They’re cute little baby waves. I want cute little baby waves. 

I enjoyed the alone time for quite a while, not realizing I could use some time to myself. I love our group but having some quiet time was rejuvenating. 

Getting back to Beleal Island from Peniche was so much harder than I expected. I asked the really cool and fun bike people if they’d help me call a cab and they said they couldn’t because in the past, they’d call a cab for someone and the people would leave and they’d be responsible for paying for the driver’s time. The guy did offer to help me dial the number though since I can never seem to get calls to work overseas. Long story short, I called 3 numbers, they all told me no and finally the cool guys called me a cab. They also made numerous calls before I got a ride.

I waited outside playing with the owner two pups before a nice native who let me call him John, picked me up and took me back to the beach where I left the others. John explained that in the 1500 century, Peniche used to be an island. He talked about the town’s history, the invasion of the Arabs, etc. Brian would have been very fascinated. 

When I found Yin and Sarah on the beach they were tanned to a crisp. It made me thank God I finally got a cab because I was seriously considering having to walk those several miles back in this sun.

I’m not a fan of sun bathing so Yin joined me for a drink and soon so did Sarah. We sat and watched the surfers until the evening air chilled us. 

That evening, we all went to dinner at a fancy restaurant we’ve been dying to return to. The last time, I had the seared tuna so this time I ordered a big plate of octopus and it was amazing. 

The girls wanted to go to a bar that had a DJ and whatever else draws people in at night. They’re were all done up and looked lovely but since I had to pack light so I can mail all my clothes home after camp, I was walking around in sneakers and Lycra. I wasn’t too worried though. Bars at night are NOT my scene so after dinner I wished them a good night and headed back to the house so I could do some reading before bed. I also just got my pictures back from the aerial shoot I had the day I left for Portugal. I’ll post a couple pictures here.

On another note, Brian is on his way! I’m just a few short days, I’ll meet him in Porto and our Camino will begin!



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