Five hours sleep / seven hours hiking

Today I learned what it’s like to be in a cloud, and how I got to this point I’m going to tell you right now. But first let me briefly go back in time and tell you about last night, because last night we celebrated our welcome party on the Azores. We all came back from our shore leave around 4:00 pm to prepare everything. We organized two music boxes from Peter Café Sport and decorated the main deck, while in the meantime the galley duty prepared a meal that hadn’t been served once on the trip because it was so logistically complicated to implement: burgers. Each of us was able to place an order to get our exact burger. After dinner the real party began. We had a bar set up on the port side of the main deck where we could get all our drinks. Johannes was our DJ all evening and we danced to his music. But because we had to be fit for tomorrow, we finished the whole thing at 11:00 p.m.. We tidied everything up and quickly went to bed, because the next day we all had to get up at 5:15 a.m. But my day started even earlier. I was up again at 4:30 a.m. to prepare breakfast for everyone and put out food to make packed lunches, because today we are going to hike the Pico, the highest mountain in Portugal, which rises 2351 m into the sky on the island of Pico. To get to the island we took a ferry for 45 minutes and when we arrived, we took buses for another half hour. We started hiking at 1100 meters. We all brought our warmest clothes with us, because it’s supposed to be below zero degrees Celsius and snowing at the top. Only Guilhelm decided to go out with shorts. We actually walked the first 400 meters in altitude as a large group with our 4 guides. Then the guides told us: They wanted to divide us into a fast group and a relaxed group. I decided to go fast and off we went, ever higher. It was getting colder and the wind was getting stronger, and at around 2000 meters our guide decided that turning around and heading back to the hut was the right decision. So we made our way back. We also met the other group and Tim and Lena handed out Kinder chocolate to everyone. Unfortunately, we could only see fog the entire hike because the clouds hung very low.

After three hours up and four hours down, we all arrived at the bottom totally happy and exhausted and enjoyed the food we had brought with us, because we only took very short breaks during the hike so that we didn’t get too cold. Then we waited another hour until everybody arrived at our starting point and drove back to the ferry port where we had to wait two hours until we could go back to the Thor. In these two hours I went in a cafe drank a hot chocolate and wrote this blog. And this is how a beautiful hiking day comes to an end.