I’ve seen a lot of steps over the past two weeks. Steps in front of me, steps behind me. Steps that made my quads and my ass feel like jelly, steps so steep I felt like I was jumping down them, a human slinky of sorts.
Yesterday, a set of steps were the last little bit of our trek that I had to hold on to. My mind was simultaneously back in the mountains, in the lush green and the striking snowy white, and right there in front of me, my next step over brown and red and golden leaves that reminded me of boarding school in the fall. It’s funny, all the places that the mountains remind me of.
And then I saw the road, and I heard my first car horn. The first signs of civilization. I resented them and greeted them with a sort of foreign apprehension. I wasn’t ready to leave quite yet; I hadn’t seen everything I wanted to see; couldn’t I just stay in the mountains a few weeks longer? Weren’t there some baby goats somewhere that needed to be cuddled, or some extra potatoes that needed to be eaten?
We got back to our hotel later on in the day and went through the necessary motions: send every single possession to laundry service. reacquaint self with razor. organize all possessions. sit and decompress. close the shades to hide from the weird city world of Pokhara (which, in its cityness, is neither very bustling nor very overwhelming). my little computer sat on my bed and I looked at it like I had looked at the road below me as I stood on a hillside full of uneven stone steps. It’s normally something I gravitate towards, but I didn’t want to open it. As much as I had missed my family, missed seeing their blurry faces via skype, I wanted to put off contact with the world for a little longer. Like the parent that wakes you up for school and you beg for five more minutes of sleep. I wished I could steal one more morning of trekking, one more evening spent around the beautiful families running each little mountain lodge, one more freezing night huddled in a sleeping bag and layers upon layers of clothing. One more breath of mountain air, one more glimpse of forest.
I don’t know if I’ll write anymore about our trek. I don’t know if I can. But I know for sure that I’ll be back for more.