Who knows what 2011 holds? So I say, just keep on trekking!
For most of us, during the past couple of years we have felt like we have been fighting our way up a rocky mountain slope, and we have reached the half way point, but can’t yet really see the top. Is it attainable? Can I make it with the supplies I have? Do I have the right tools? Am I prepared to keep on fighting?
Over the holidays my wife and I visited the Himalayas and trekked across different monasteries in Bhutan. Talk about a change in perspective: This is truly a third-world country, where people are still living in mud huts and only get one meal a day. Do you think these people give up halfway up the mountain when feeding their family for a week is at stake? Absolutely not. They keep on trekking and do whatever it takes to survive.
As average adventurers without training and without the proper equipment, my wife and I set out to climb up to the Taktsang Monastery (also known as Tiger’s Nest), an 8.5-mile (13.7-kilometer) hike, climbing over 5,000 vertical feet (1,524 meters). I don’t know if any of you have hiked in high altitude before, but let me tell you, it is a whole different ballgame. As my legs started to give out and I felt faint from the altitude, a new attitude for 2011 overtook me: The climb up the mountain is tough (and it just might kill me), but am I going to turn back now? NOT A CHANCE. So we kept on trekking up the mountain, and eventually after a few hours we arrived to the most spectacular view I have ever seen (pictured below), and it occurred to me that this was the payoff for hard work and a treacherous climb. Had I turned back, I never would have known what could have been.
The point is, none of us really knows where 2011 will take us – maybe to the top of a spectacular mountain, or maybe we inch up a little more towards the top – but for this adventurer, turning back is simply not an option.
The end result: