Thursday started with Sandra, Horst and Andrea, all going for an early morning swim in the pool by hut. They were determined to enjoy their swim to the fullest so quite naturally they had their morning coffee in the pool as well! The days’ hike started off quite well, although the rain clouds were gathering ominously above the grey peaks behind the hut. However, soon after leaving I noticed that Polly had started to limp again, even though she had her new shoes on. It took me a short time to realize that the problem was the shoes, while protecting the pads of her paws, were also at the same time causing soreness on the top of her paws by sweating and rubbing. So I baled, and handed over the lead of the longer group to Bernard, returning to the hut to remove Polly’s shoes and to join the shorter group instead. The shorter group was just setting off under Clifford’s lead, and I was able to join at short notice. We set off along the same route, and under a light rain, and we had gone only a short way before Sandra slipped on the freshly soaked mud and grass, and firmly sprained her ankle. It was only a minor injury but it was sufficient to rule out any further hiking for the day, so we turned around and left the second group to their own devices. Taking the opportunity to enjoy a relaxing Apfelstrudel at the friendly Gasthof just across the road by the bridge, while waiting for the rain to stop. We took the road back to the hut, to make things easy, and settled in for another half-day of “R and R”.
As luck would have it, Conxita was taking the day out to do some quiet filming of her own, and wanted to interview the farmer (if he was willing), and ask him some questions about how he felt about the naked group renting his farmhouse. Although it was probably a bit bizarre for this alpine farmer, for me it was quite amusing to watch the naked Conxita, and her assistant Nelisa, film the clothed farmer going about his chores. I then helped to translate the German/English for the interview itself and, even if he thought we were a little strange, he was positively helpful and very courteous the entire time. To show my gratitude and as a token of our own goodwill, I gave him a copy of the “Naked Hiking” book as a gift. If nothing else, perhaps the book will provide some light entertainment and discussion value during the cold winters ahead.