A Travellerspoint blog

See the Light and the Leonids

warm and happy with what I have

My eyes open to a gray green haze. The morning light is shining through the sleeping bag that I'm buried in. I feel the hole in the ground where the rock was that was helping the little bush hold me up all night; a vague memory of knocking it down the hill at some point. I also remember seeing a flashlight and hearing a person walk past early in the night. I think it was a ranger and I'm glad I got off the path.

I remember now that I must find the machete. I'll wait till ten when the sun hits. I drift off again.

It's still freezing at 9ish. I curl up and daydream. Tired of this bush, I get up when the Sun had turned the western mountain to gold. It still wasn't here; freezing; breath frozen in a cloud in front of me. I begin the search.

First I take a picture to remember my insane perch:
See the little bush of tall grass that was holding me up?

I climb up to the last spot where I noticed it was gone. I sweep the area on my way back to where the path ended. I had followed the shooting star, but now I see that I was already on the real Telephone Trail. I was so concerned about climbing up the mountain that I was expecting the path to wind its way up switchbacks to the top. The path had rounded a corner around a tree and went down the hill a bit before going up. It was so obvious in the light. I smacked my forehead.

Well, now I just have to find the knife and at least I know where I'm going. It would have been nice to have just gone up the path.

I was figuring the machete was most likely on the shooting star trail where I slipped and landed on my butt and slid down the leaves. It wasn't there. Oh shit. Now I'm just a little sad and panicky. I climb higher and bounce from stump to stump and around the ledges; grab the tree and pull myself up. I remember all of it with disdain, but now it's so beautiful. I look around. I was so cold, but I had climbed into the light. I turned around and apreciated the golden mountains in the west because I was a part of that light now. I did some basic Chi Gong meditations, then Soaring Crane sets 1 and 3.

I felt soft and malleable and really good. I was rubbing my hands together for the end of the set and I turned and my eyes followed a tall thin sliver of light amongst the shadow realm above me. The machete glinted at the top of that trail of light. My eyes brightened and my smile cracked my lips. I was ecstatic. I walked over as my eyes teared up (you might think I'm being overly dramatic, but in the wild that shit happens). I can't believe it.

The blade is stuck in the earth, handle up, in a pile of leaves at the base of a ledge. It reminded me of Excalibur, so I dramatically pulled it from its resting place and held it up high in the light. I was still tearing up. I had found my friend (I might be lonely).

Long story short I was happy exactly the way it all happened. I believe Plato said, "We should all wish for things to happen exactly as they do." It ended up being a lot longer than I thought carrying all that stuff up the trail. It is such a steep trail and it's not well made. I got lost at the top and had trouble finding where my leaf slide was. At night I probably would have set up camp on the flat top on the trail and it would have been windy and cold and the ranger would have found me (probably a $250 fine or jail knowing my luck). That would've ended my trip.

I put the stuff down and searched topless in the Sun until I found the camp. I had just enough time to set a trap in front of an animal hole and start carving Justin's present. The Sun went down and I used the wood on my sandy ledge to make a smoky fire (it was too old and had bark stuck to it). I cooked a carrot and an orange. I ate all the peel because it was smoked and much sweeter. It was warm and juicy. I made tea and then covered the fire with a big pile of sand that I had prepared. I had read about this secret. With no tent you can put your sleeping bag right on the fire and be warm all night. The sand insulates the fire and your body keeps it warm and visa versa.

This was amazing. I lay there for a couple hours and just roast. It was about a hundred degrees and I watched the sun set turn to purple, then indigo, then the starry blackness swept across the sky. I sat and watched about 50 shooting stars that were from the Earth flying through the Leonid meteor cluster. I didn't see tons of them, but every one was incredible; huge tails and bright flashes. One was so awesome I loudly let out a, "Aaaaaaaaaahhh." It went, "Foom! sssssssSSSSSSHHHHHWWWOOOMMMM! kaaaa." In case you can't picture that, it flashed really bright and lit up the sky. It twinkled as the bright ball slowly cut its way through the atmosphere, lasting seconds. It had a huge tail that twinkled and sparked bigger and better than any firework I had ever seen (Duh! It was made by Gawd!) I literally saw the thing break into pieces and I might have heard it. But, I think it just inspired my imagination so much that I added the sound. Who knows?

I was so amazingly happy to be there, at my camp. I dug my feet into the hot sand because my feet get cold more than anything. I get into the tent and it suddenly got really cold. I was scared. Did I pick a really cold spot? No. A cold front must have just moved in. I was freezing. My body just started to warm up buried in all the insulation I could find. I heard a slow, "RRRRRRR." The mattress was moving. My eyes widened. This is a big cliff. I looked and the tent was stretching to stay in place. I jumped out in the ice of the night and, in a jolt of adrenaline, lifted a huge rock and set it in front of the mattress. I scrambled in and repositioned everything. I went to sleep not nearly as happy. Oh well. I'll build up the dirt tomorrow.

Posted by - Rain 19:30

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Glad you heard the earth move and propped up your mattress. How about a photo of that ledge you were on? Must be pretty narrow. BTW: I googled that quote ("We should all wish") but only found you as the source!

by Sheryl S

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