The Big Burnout

OMG, what a hike we hiked.  If I’d understood how difficult it was going to be, not only wouldn’t I have gone, I would have forbidden the kids to go.  So, it’s probably as well I didn’t know, because sore as I am, I must admit that it was a satisfying experience and we saw a lot of spectacular scenery.  The kids just clambered over the rocks and pulled themselves up by roots and whatever else they could grab, onward and upstream, totally oblivious to the imminent death I saw at every moment.

I, unfortunately, did not fare as well.  I was almost always at the tail end of our party of eleven, occasionally required a bit of pulling up, or a bit of being pushed up, or both.  I was looking for safer paths up the side, through the forest, but there weren’t any,  for most of the course of the stream.  I love a nice, pleasant walk through the woods, but when there is no path, nature’s indifference to man comes to seem like downright hostility.  I grabbed thorns, I stepped on thorns, and at one point a long vine of blackberry thwacked me across my fat belly, and I had  a thorn lodged there until I got home.   At one point, I stepped on a batch of thorns and, startled, stumbled backwards, grasping a small sapling which was not really meant for the task of keeping me from rolling down the hill but, fortunately, it rose to the occasion.

Before that, we’d swum through one pool because it was easier than walking around.  I diligently moved my wallet and keys from my pocket into the backpack but I forgot about the things in my other pocket.  A pack of tissues got soaked but that’s O.K., they’re not expensive.  My glasses, the most important thing, are not affected by water.  But I think I may have destroyed my phone.  We’re trying to dry it out, but I am not optimistic.  On the other hand, it’s over ten years old, so maybe it’s time.

The scenery, I must admit, was spectacular.  A succession of pools and waterfalls and eventually we made it to the top of  the mountain and a close up view of the windmills, those huge turbines that Don Quixote’s giants would have seen as giants.  Also, I was quite pleased with my children’s stamina and fearlessness.   So, despite the fact that I am sure, cut, sunburned and totally knackered, I feel good.

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