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Craig's Musings

Benidorm 24 Day 20

Today was rather uneventful, possibly because all I really wanted to do was get some distance in. And I did, just shy of 116km.

Having completed my morning routine of making a baguette over the bathroom sink, I popped down to the beach to drink some orange juice while I waited for the reception to open so I could get Terence.

I’ll be honest, I am starting to feel drained now. Maybe my body knows the end is coming and is celebrating by letting out a huge sigh of relief that is manifesting as fatigue.

And so it was, the first 20km were hard. It was boring roads, but I was okay with that after yesterdays off roading. The excitement of seeing the sea had passed, although as I type this now from my balcony, with the sea in the distance, I once again a reminded how hopelessly powerful it is, with a scale that could swallow humanity for breakfast.

Through a mixture of cycle paths by the side of big roads, and cycling on the roads themselves, it was like this until I hit the outskirts of Valencia. I even ended up eating my bathroom baguette not in a beautiful park setting, or by a river; but next to a bin on a trading estate. Yes, today was very industrial.

When I got to Valencia, to be honest, all I really wanted to do was get through the other side. I love a City Break as much as the next man, but on this journey, I always feel like I am getting in the way. 

When I hit the Turia river bed gardens, my memory kicked in from a Travel Man. After a devastating flood in 1957, the River Turia’s course was diverted south of the city, leaving the old river bed empty. This was created into a parkway that stretches for almost 9 km, part of which I found myself on, traversing bike renters and swerving to miss the electric scooter crews.

Then I was hit with the futuristic combination of the Queen Sofia Palace of Arts, the Hemisfèric., the Museu de les Ciències Príncipe Felipe, the Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias and the L’Àgora. If I were indeed there on a city break, I could have spent half a day in a picnic blanket just looking at the architecture.

But I wasn’t. I was itching to crack on, with 40km still to do. And so I did.

It was windy in the wrong direction but I kept going. I was aiming for Cullera. It sounded lovely and in my head it was a small town. It was not.

Huge high rise blocks encasing a lovely beach and somewhat deserted. I hadn’t booked anything and since being on the coast I have been more willing to wing things. I found a hotel, but their price over the counter was much higher than their Booking.Com price. So I booked it online, standing at the reception desk.

What a funny world we live in.



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