“She asked me ‘Just the two of you?!””
“Who said that?”
“My boss…and also my sister, her husband, my boyfriend, my mom, everyone I told…Maybe because we’re girls. “
“But we don’t need a boy to come along… we’re the buffest people I know.”
Turn signal, on ramp, Hwy to the coast, inspirational podcast turned down for car ride conversations and the makings of an event theme song that did not catch on:
♫ Big Sur-ing on a Thursday
Aint showering til Sunday
Backpacking with my girl, Rosay
In the wilderness, we keep it stanky ♪
Off to Monterey County, a destination the two marked in their calendars at the beginning of the year after seeing a guided bag-packing trip advertised on Groupon for $200, scoffing at the cost, and ultimately deciding to guide themselves through the wilderness to destination hot springs.
“We can totally do this on our own.” said two ladies with no survivor skills.
After one coffee shop powwow to discuss details of the trip aka Google reviews of the trail and watch you-tube videos of people getting lost on said trail, the two neglected to make any preparations until the week of. Preparations consisting of 1-2 squats, a push up, and a round of hip hop abs to condition for the excursion as well as procuring a sleeping bag that doubles as a large coat, a female urinal aka a “she dick”, and pepper spray. However, seeing as one of the two had not worn a backpack since high school, walking through life with nothing more than a fanny pack since then, and the other, being a minimalist in her own right, who often fits all necessities in a little black satchel.
Needless to say, the two had no idea the actual weight of a pack carrying camping gear nor a clue about what they were in for:
Countless switch backs on steep rocky terrain, narrow paths along cliff sides, burning sun, fallen tree obstacle course, fallen tree bridges, fallen tree ladders, elevation heaven bound with an equally hellish decent whilst carrying the weight of a small sized person on their backs.
One of the two may have concocted her own bug repellent that included a special brew of vinegar in the solution which my have in truth attracted more bugs than it repelled. She remained in denial over the adverse effects of the solution even as she literally felt the flies licking her face. And the other may have come prepared with a survival kit from Wal-mart and may have for what ever reason accidently got it stuck in a tree to which she responded by yelling at the said tree that the kit had cost $20, all to no avail.
After a day and night and 10 miles into the woods, the two decided to change into swimsuits and wade in the river. The river turbulent and nearly freezing, was certainly not destination hot springs, but any body of water was good enough.
“This is like hydro therapy.” Said one of the two.
“Its when you take a dip in freezing water and trick your body into thinking it’s dying to reduce inflammation.
“Sounds about right.”
One of the two perched on a rock and noticed specks of dirt on hands and legs. Upon closer inspection, the specks of dirt were actually coiled worms that proved difficult to remove. Most were dislodged expect for the unlucky bunch that remained undetected in her thigh crease that later suffocated and died after 12 more miles of hiking. Upon a quick Google search one of the two discovered the coiled worms were actually leeches.
“Blood letting and leech therapy has been used in medicine before.”said one.
“Ok so we had hydro-leech therapy at the hot springs.”
Long story short, the two survived. And furthermore the two felt overwhelmingly more alive, simultaneously large and small surrounded by giant redwood, pine, oak and enormous mountain range. Meeting light at daybreak and remaining on the path until sunset. Despite the warm sun, there remained a tickle of cold sea breeze. The air, fresh and fragrant, filled their lungs at every deep or labored breath. Sore muscles, stiff necks, aching feet, thirst, sweat,–pain so good, always serving as a reminder of being alive. Standing the midst of nature with little urge to capture and share, but rather a desperation to absorb and appreciate in real time.
“I think we’re a little mad for doing this.” said one.
“Like the Mad Hatter said ‘all the best people are.” Replied the other.