5/12/10: Cabanaconde, Peru
Kevin and I are not outdoorsy people. I mean, before this trip, I had spent time outdoors of course. Because how else can you get from your parking lot space to the ice cream place? Hey, those mint chocolate chip cones won’t walk themselves out to your car no matter how much you beep your car horn. I know, I’ve tried it.
But really, before this trip, I had never really been hiking. And since we’ve been on this trip, we have done a whole lot of hiking.
We hiked to see the gorillas in Uganda.
We hiked the Annapurna Circuit.
We hiked the Routeburn Track.
We hiked in Torres Del Paine.
We hiked in El Chalten.
Today, we hiked down to the Oasis at the bottom of Colca Canyon and back up to Cabanaconde.
In a few days, we will hike the Inca Trail.
Sometimes, I have to ask myself what it is that I like about hiking. Because as far as I can tell, hiking involves three of my least favorite things: exerting copious amounts of energy, not knowing exactly what is going to happen next, and being hot/cold/dirty/uncomfortable/rained on/sweaty. Really, to be completely honest with you guys, I’m pretty sure I don’t actually like hiking. (What? What’s going on? But she loved the Annapurna Circuit! And she loved Patagonia! Crazy girl!)
I don’t like hiking. I’m reminded of this every time we start another hike. I don’t particularly enjoy walking, and I have terrible posture so I end up with a sore back after every hike. The paths are usually dusty and rocky, I always fall down at least once, and I am constantly counting down the minutes until we get to the end. But for some reason, after the hiking is over and I have clean clothes and clean fingernails again, I can’t seem to remember any of that stuff. All I can remember is this:
It’s completely cheesy and predictable, but it’s true. I love seeing the scenery change. I love looking at all of the brightly colored flowers and the plants I’ve never seen before. I love taking pictures that I wouldn’t get to take otherwise. I love stumbling upon a beautiful scene, a really pretty moment that I wouldn’t have imagined existed. I love watching the clouds move and marveling at how amazing the sky seems to look all the time. I love the fact that I am going somewhere on my own two feet, through sheer strength of will (because let’s face it, it’s not those short stubby legs getting me through). And the sad fact is, hiking just has to be involved. There doesn’t seem to be anything I can do about that part, unfortunately.
Today, we hiked down to the Oasis, which is actually a town called Sangalle. It’s a small place with palm trees and about four hotels with swimming pools. Kevin and Dad Curry both swam, but I just took a nap in a hammock instead.
We ate lunch and relaxed for a couple of hours, and then we made the grueling hike back up to Cabanaconde. It wasn’t particularly fun, but I still loved it. When it was over.
Picture of the Day: A silhouette of Dad Curry.