Tomorrow, Mike is leaving to head back to France for work, and Philipp and I are heading to Morocco. But before we parted ways, there was one more thing we had to do.
When we left on this trip, we brought rock climbing equipment with us, despite the fact that neither of us know how to rock climb, in the hopes that we would magically find someone who would just feel like teaching us out of the kindness of their hearts.
Enter, Mike. We love Mike for a million reasons, but one of them is what he did for us on this day in San Bartolo (even though I tried to stop him, because it was actually completely insane).
Mike not only knows how to rock climb, but he is also great at it and has worked teaching others how to do it.
He showed us how to tie all our knots and how to belay. He did all the lead climbs for us, which was totally crazy not only because he trusted us to was belayhim, but especially because we only had two quickdraws. That means that Mike had to climb up, attach himself to the first hook, then climb up further, attach himself to a second hook, and then actually climb all the way back down to retrieve the first quickdraw, climb past the second quickdraw, and attach himself to a third hook, repeat, repeat, repeat until he got to the top. This guy has balls of steel like you’ve never seen.
He made it all the way up, passed the rope through the top hooks, and we lowered him down.
Philipp learned quickly:
I didn’t do too bad either. I’m terrified of heights, so this was a real challenge for me. The fact that the starting point of this crag was already so high didn’t really help. I pushed through and made it up pretty far and then insisted on being lowered down slowly, unlike both of these psychos who were propelling off the wall all the way down and yelling “faster! faster!”.
After a few hours, we were ravenous. We had all earned our dinner. I made bread and we made sandwiches.
We woke up the next morning to a visit from some new friends.
And then back to the rocks.
We had one final meal together, which I cooked on Mike’s alcohol cooker because we were totally out of gas for our stove.
We hugged goodbye and promised to see each other soon, and then Mike was on his way. He left us this, to keep with us on our onward journey. Love you, dude!
Soon, we’ll be on the boat to Morocco, but for now, I’m still just enjoying this view.