Each step is filled with unimaginable pain, like a sharp knife cutting deep into the foot, again and again. I force myself not to think about the miles I have yet to cover, it is easier to focus on the shorter-term targets: next building, next corner, a car parked on the street… The burning ache is too much to ignore, and so instead I focus on the pain, embrace it and try to use it to push me further.
No, this has nothing to do with running, not at all. Running is easy in comparison to this! I am just giving you a quick peek into my latest vacation trip to Montreal, which for some reason involved a truly extraordinary amount of hiking, marching, hill-climbing and, in general, a great deal of physical trauma. My family enjoyed the entire experience, although watching me hobble around grimacing in pain and begging for mercy was definitely the highlight of the trip, as my wife and kids couldn’t stop laughing! I never knew Montreal had so many nearly-vertical hills, all of which we needed to scale.
I take that back – the true Kodak moment of this vacation would have to be watching their faces each night, as I somehow made it back to the hotel room, collapsed on the bed and took my shoes off… Their laughter was actually contagious, and I couldn’t help but smile myself, as we all enjoyed a look at my completely destroyed, bleeding, beyond-abused feet…
But let’s not take away from the breathtaking experience that Montreal truly was; it is like a glance into old Europe mixed within the contemporary North American architecture, with cobblestone streets, old-world churches and countless inviting cafes and restaurants. The mix of French clearly makes the city more dynamic, more fun and more unique; there’s nothing like it. As soon as my recovery is complete, we are definitely visiting again; as I always say – physical recovery: 3 weeks, emotional recovery: 3 months.