Until we arrived at Silvaplana in the Engadin valley we hadn’t really stopped. Due to living on an island & the van being on the mainland we couldn’t load up little by little, stowing carefully as we went; instead we had to pack everything we thought we might want/need (hoping it would fit into the limited spaces available) and pile it all straight into the van off the ferry! After this we had a couple of days in the UK faffing/attempting to unpack, then a couple of days to cover quite a few miles across northern France and through Switzerland for the ÖtillÖ Swimrun Sprint Engadin.
We had chosen the Engadin as our first destination as we love taking part in the ÖtillÖ Isles of Scilly and the timing just seemed ideal to kick-start our trip. Due to lack of any recent training and general tiredness we didn’t push at all hard during the event – in fact the warmth of the day coupled with some big climbs on the ‘run’ sections made it more of a dip-clamber-jog than a swim-run! It was also the first time we had entered an event together and we came through it smiling (phew). The cool lake water was a beautiful jade green and a similar temperature to the sea at home, but more refreshing in a way as you could drink it as required, which we loved – the salty sea in Scilly can be a bit claggy in the mouth after a while and definitely not recommended to drink! So we did the event and then it was time to kick back for a bit.
Sitting in the warmth of the afternoon sun drying off after a dip in the lake, it felt so good to have a restful day, much needed and so very much appreciated. It was going to be hard to leave Silvaplana as we loved it there so much. That last day by the beautiful lake felt delightfully relaxing and I could almost feel the weight lifting off my shoulders as the fresh Alpine air filled every pore. Paddle boarding around the lake was mindful and reinvigorating (I even managed some SUP yoga for the first time & it was very satisfying not to fall into the lake!).
A little time to take things easy and not feel under pressure was a welcome reminder of why we are doing this trip. It’s very easy to get heavily involved in the minutiae of exactly where we are heading next, when, which route, where we might stop/stay, where/when/what we will eat for meals that day, etc,etc… Although these discussions can be tricky at times or make us feel under pressure, that is all part of our trip. In essence this is an opportunity to learn more about ourselves and each other (the good bits and not-so-good bits!), to reconnect… despite some intensity to the odd moment here and there, we are definitely learning a lot!