I went back to that harbour and waited, until one afternoon I heard a ship’s horn in the background. And there it was, one of the big ones.
An athletic young man full of enthusiasm and native of Holland, that’s Erik. With plenty of qualities to pass along. Right away, without you even noticing, there is a big smile on your face thanks to the energy he transmits.
When I woke up again from my dream, I opened my laptop, just as I do every morning, and decided to do some research. Do you believe in the power of attraction? I am a firm believer of this idea. It’s like when a geographer pictures himself every year carrying out his work in an island such as Iceland or studying the orography of the city of Neuquén, in the South of Argentina. Maybe one day he will put all his efforts into making that dream come true. Maybe one day his power of attraction will turn it into a reality.
Well, I tried to give free rein to the idea running around in my head, so I went on the Internet to look for a sportsperson who would like to discover our island, Gran Canaria, practising the sport of his or her preference. And I found Erik. We got in touch through the world of communication and social media. I studied his Instagram profile in detail and I was sure that he would like my proposal.
We arranged a meeting and we picked him up in his residence in Maspalomas. He didn’t speak any Spanish. He is from Holland, from a small city called “Ede”, located an hour’s drive away from Amsterdam city centre. His great passion in life is teaching other people how to detect mechanisms to achieve their goals in sport. He defines himself as a mind trainer, a trainer that brings out your positive side so that you can leave behind your fears and face the things that block you and, eventually, make them go away.
We spoke in English, luckily I could understand everything he said, so I was able to have a conversation with him.
My mind was set. We would go see the sunrise from Tunte (San Bartolomé, in the South of Gran Canaria) to start the day full of energy, and then we would go running for a while along the route which takes you (in the opposite direction) from Tunte to the old Camino de La Plata. This is one of the most spectacular trails in Gran Canaria because of the views it offers. Your visual senses stay hooked on the magnetic power of what’s going on around you. The highest rock formations of the island came slowly into sight. Erik remarked that the landscape was quite similar to that of the Grand Canyon, where the geological formations shape a valley with rock walls of sandy brown colours. A comparison that I had occasionally heard from other people.
Erik was both, amazed and astonished by the breathtaking environment before his eyes, and didn’t hesitate for a second when he said:
“Marcos, the experience you have given me today has been without a doubt one of the most wonderful days of my life. I never knew this side of Gran Canaria. I never thought the island could offer everything I have discovered today. Places to unwind, to practice sports under pleasant weather conditions, and it is plain to see that this island also offers endless options for sport lovers to feel they have all the services and offers they need available to them”.
“Have you ever tried any of our typical dishes?”, I asked him. “No, and if I’m honest I have been waiting for my friends to take me to try the Canarian cuisine, but we really haven’t had the chance yet’, he said laughing. ‘Don’t worry, when we end our day in the mountain, we’ll follow the trail and you’ll be surprised”, I said.
When we finished, we headed to the Hotel Cordian Mogán, where a refreshing fruit juice was waiting for us, made out of seasonal fruits from the places we had passed through. After that, the requisite big lunch consisted of pasta or fish, and we finished with a relaxing session at the “Spa Inagua” inside the Hotel Cordial Mogán itself.
After a massage session, we went to the hotel reception and we parted ways.
“I hope we see each other again next time I come to Gran Canaria. Everyone here has been very good to me and has welcomed me warmly. I’ll always be thankful to Gran Canaria Tri Bike & Run for this experience”
, he told us when he said goodbye.
“It was an honour for me, Erik, and thanks to you, we can confirm that Gran Canaria is a powerful destination for those who love sports and, of course, for those who love running. I hope we see each other again soon”
, I said.
From the moments we experienced, I would like to highlight two: the moment of ‘how Erik started’ his day, the look on his face, and ‘how he ended’ it. The expression he wore said it all. We had confirmed and proven that he had felt enough energy in his veins to want to repeat his stay on the island someday.
Who will be next? I am sure I’ll dream of another ship arriving and of welcoming another person. So, I’ll go back to the harbour and wait for the next ship that berths.