I love a good hike. I’ve done a few… Inca Trail, Ben Evis. My favourite hike was the one I did with my buddy Steve. We walked from Dublin to Galway… for the craic.
Both of us are pretty fit so we assumed it would be a piece of cake. We were wrong.
It started over lunch. We had an Indian on Harcourt Street. I hadn’t seen Steve in a while and we were catching up. That year, Steve had set himself a goal of doing one challenge per week – things like learning to pick a lock, polyphasic sleeping etc. And as we are chatting about his various challenges, Steve just threw it out there…
“Maybe I’ll just walk to Galway for one of the weekly challenges”;
“OK”, I said.
I don’t think Steve meant it. I don’t think I meant it either! But we called each other’s bluff and a few weeks later, we were on our way.
Our rough plan: get the train to Dublin City Center and walk to Galway City Centre. It’s about 200km… but I don’t remember discussing the distance before we set out. I’m not sure we knew! Thinking back, it was crazy. It was beautiful though – total ignorance and bliss.
Walking to Galway was great. And it was fun because no one does it. A century ago you might have done it but you’d probably never walk back…
We got the bus back.
Day 4 was when the blisters kicked in. Steve and I made a rule that we were not allowed to complain. So instead of complaining, we just said the exact opposite of how we were feeling:
“My foot feels amazing!”;
“I just love how the rain gets into my shoes and swishes around”;
“I’m not going to stop. I’m going to keep walking forever. This is the best!”.
We arrived in Galway at around 9pm on day 6. We collapsed into our bunk beds in our hostel. We did it!
The next day we got drunk.
The next day we got the bus home… It took two hours.