Tired but with an excitement in my chest I woke up the next morning. Oh, what a short night, especially when you wake up a few times just because you need a toilet. My feet hurt and I tried to find the way to the toilet area but suddenly I stopped. With my head torch on I looked directly into the eyes of an animal. Illuminated eyes were staring at me! I kept on walking and it ran a few meters then stopped, turned around and stared in my direction. I shrugged inside and starred back. Just standing still I didn’t know what to do, I think it was a fox as his tail and body shape was lookalike the one I have seen in London. About half a minute I was paralysed by his eyes or maybe he was due to the light it was looking into. This was the first time ever I was scared during the race and I didn’t know what to do. Everyone was asleep. Hopefully it just ran away and I turned around and tried to find a bush to release myself.
Unbelievable, I am on the last day of my big Jungle Marathon challenge and I remind myself of my achievement so far:
Stage 1: ca. 24km
Stage 2: ca. 23km
Stage 3: ca. 38km
The 4th and last stage for me was the most exhausting one but I was grateful to be able to experience another day in the Jungle (38km). The first bit was flat and good to run. After a while I met my friends Flo and Liz. We kept each other company and had a lot of fun especially when we entered the 2km river crescent. The whole week I was looking forward to swim or wade along the river. It was fun but painful on the same time due to many logs in the water we were unable to see. “ Auuuu, uh, another one … Be careful and here is another log.” “Sch…another log! Aaaah! “, that’s what you heard all the time. I was laughing in between as it was just fun, pain and an amazing view along the river. Wow!
Straight after the river that took us ages for only 2km we had to face another km of swamps. My rucksack was all the time in my dry bag. Whenever there was water I have throughn my bag into the water and walked or waded though the muddy surface. I tried to step on the logs I saw because I was never sure how deep the water was and what was underneath. This was the most exhausting part of the day and unfortunately it happened! I twisted my ankle twice in the swamps. It hurt but I was still able to walk but in that moment it just came into my mind. What would happen if someone actually has an accident and is not able to walk afterwards? OMG what a nightmare! There is no way to get an ambulance or any medical equipment even close to where I was. Ok, I immediately whipped that thought out of my mind as I had to keep on walking.
The last 20km were very tough for me and my team as we all was suffering from an injury. In the morning we were running but that was not possible anymore. On top we were really struggling with the heat.
Again, the views were amazing: a very long sandy oasis or a very shallow river with yellow flowers; a landscape you never would see on a regular holiday trip. Breathtaking beautiful!
When we reached the road I thought it might be just a few km like the other days whenever we reached a road, but it wasn’t. This damn sandy road went on for EVER! Not able to run, pain in my foot and walking on sand was driving me crazy. It was hard and it took hours on this endless road. Just the three of us were finally reaching the last check point. We emptied our shoes. Sand everywhere! Feet up! Relax.
Back on the road again we started to sing and move to keep the motivation going. Oh, we had fun again and after another 2,5 hours we finally reached the base camp just after sundown.
DONE! 121km in 4 days throughout the Brazilian Amazon! I made it!
An unbelievable and life changing experience! And I would do it again…