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El Pilar De La Mola

07860 Sant Francesc Xavier, Balearic Islands, Spain
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The End of the Road. Literally.  Sant Francesc Xavier  Spain

The End of the Road. Literally.

The flat, taut ribbon of narrow road stretched blissfully toward the horizon, and finally we were able to coast with the wind at our backs, our thighs burning from peddling our bicycles up the steep, winding road to the plateau.

Streamlined cars, motorcycles, and even the occasional bus whizzed past, but their effortless speed seemed laughable, now that they no longer threatened to shove us from the switchbacks. Sure, their passengers would end up with our same view at the end of the road, but they wouldn't have earned it.

At least that's what we kept telling ourselves.

Our cycles allowed us to make a roadside pit stop where we could see nearly the entire island of Formentera spread out before us - water to the right and left with a narrow strip of land running down the middle. Then on to the plateau, where we passed a Dutch-looking windmill, soft fields of golden grass, and groves of towering pines before reaching the treasure of our trek - La Mola Lighthouse on the southernmost tip of the island.

While the other tourists gathered to one side of the cliff-clinging structure, we walked across a field of rock to our own secluded picnic retreat overlooking the vast Mediterranean while gulls and lizards begged for crumbs.

More than the view, more than the height, and even more than how small we felt at that moment, it was the triumph of peddling our pasty white way to the edge of the earth that made us feel on top of the world.