A lot of catching up

It has been a busy two weeks. Though, busy in Oregon is of a different flavor. As a celebration of finishing our first segment of classes, our group went on a hiking trip. We split into 3 separate trips. 

My group went to Yosemite and hiked 45 miles. 'How lovely' you might find yourself thinking or 'isn't that wonderful' and while I am sure your heart is in the right place, these comments do not reflect my experience. WE woke at 3 am Sunday morning, drove 8 hours to California, grabbed a quick lunch, and began hiking at 12:30. My professors wanted to assure us that, although we were going a mere 8 miles on our first day (nothing compared to our upcoming 14 mile days), this day would be the most difficult. After looking around at my fellow students, wondering which one of them had scoffed at the 8 miles (figuring out who to push off a cliff later), I realized that none of them had been the scofferes. A few were already looking faint at the idea of 8 miles of flat walking which wasn't even an option. Nope. We had 8 hours of honest straight uphill and switchbacks. We gained an easy 3000 miles in 2 hours-note: I used the word 'easy' as a modest substitution for other  four letter words I would rather have used. 

In the midst of this death march during a water break, George, a fellow student, began casually doing push ups with his backpack still on. Had there been a breath of air in my severely weakened lungs I would have casually commented to him (using more of those choice four letter words) my opinion of his behavior and perhaps may have even suggested he go on a long walk over the side of a cliff. However, I was lying flat on my back shaking, drenched in sweat, and spontaneously convulsing and was unable to attain a breath of air. 

Arriving at camp that evening (on George's back, my legs having given out around mile 3) we all settled comfortably into warm sleeping bags. I, being one of the few students with previous backpacking experience, had thought ahead to these long cold hours before sleep. Naturally I brought a book to pass the time. Sadly it was not Mcmanus. It was, however, a medieval romance novel of such quality that it is hard to compare. Uncle Pete, you would be proud. 

Unfortunately, this said George character just sat down next to me and I can't finish this post now. I will soon. 

Love from Oregon. 


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