Tuesday, 4 June 2013

"The Best Laid Plans Of Mice And Men..."

El Escorial.

"...often go awry."

Yesterday, in an attempt to squeeze in as much tourist stuff as I can before leaving Spain, some friends and I went to a place called El Escorial, wanting to go to the monasteries and then get the bus to Valley of the Fallen where you can find Franco's tomb. I know some may be thinking "why would you want to go there?!" but it's such a huge part of Spain's history that I really wanted to go and see it all.

However, as it turns out, Mondays in the area of El Escorial means that absolutely everything is shut, apart from your cafés and tapas bars. Brilliant. This is why you should check opening hours before you take a trip! You'd think after living abroad and travelling for the last 10 months or so, that would be standard procedure. Well, it's not. 

Not wanting to waste the time we spent travelling, we headed to a tapas bar to grab some food and coffee, and tried to figure out what else we could do. We'd seen a park on one of the maps near the tourist office, and decided to go there. The weather was gorgeous, so we figured we'd relax, enjoy the sun, take in the views, things like that. On the way to the park, we came across a marked trail, so we diverted to follow that to see where it would take us.

Turns out that that trail was in fact a hike. And I was not prepared for a hike! After an hour of walking and not seeing an end to the incline we were walking, I was worried. I didn't feel hypo, but at the same time, I hadn't accounted for a hike. I hadn't reduced my insulin with lunch and I was very aware of the fact that I only had a carton of juice and a cereal bar on me should I need it. My question was, how do I make this work without going hypo?!

I tested my blood sugar after an hour and a half: 4.9mmol/l. At this point, I decided to eat the cereal bar, in the hope that it would stop the hypo from occurring, or at least put it at bay until we were well on our way down to the bottom again. Not being prepared made me nervous. I know I can't plan every single day right down to the last minute, but something like this, and I definitely would have carried more hypo treatments and snack food, just in case. 

All in all, we were walking for 3 hours. The views were breathtaking, and it definitely made the trip worthwhile despite everything being closed. When we got to the bottom, I checked my blood sugar again. 5.9mmol/l, and on returning back to the flat (having eaten a packet of crisps to help keep my sugar levels up until I got back) 6.1mmol/l. 

Vicki, 1. Diabetes, 0.  

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