Reality TV gets a bad rap. I, for one, like to indulge. I personally find the Bachelor mentally stimulating… it’s fascinating to watch human reactions to being rejected (a common response is “*sob*I put myself out there *sob*.” What does that have to do with anything? This isn’t k-5. You don’t get a star. If I went to Britain and put myself out there to be the next queen…guess what.It ain’t happening. And I wouldn’t get a limo drive back to the hotel.) And, of course, it’s always awesome to watch unvarnished female cattiness. Where it dives into silliness is the unrealistic setting of “falling in love” where the biggest challenge facing the contestants is making sure your particular giggle and set of DD’s creates more chemistry than the live Barbie next to you. If I were running this show, I’d create a level of scenario. (None of which my husband and I would have passed) 1. Play Settlers of Catan against each other. 2. Do a task together. 3. Go to a location where neither of you have been, or know how to get to. Rely on a GPS that takes you two wrong towns away and tells you you’ve arrived. Send the woman (who is notoriously terrible at anything directional) to get obscure directions from a gas station clerk and come repeat them to you. ***show over. Chris Harrison out of a job.
The beginning of our trip, since it included a buy-one-get-one Autumnal drink from Starbucks, was brimming with potential. We were facing a bit of a late hike, since the days have been growing shorter, and we were going after the football game let out. We were due to meet up with friends and after figuring out the extent of our lostness (see challenge 3) told them to go on ahead. Perhaps due to the pity party I hosted in the car, we went on, and hiked anyway, both of us toting a child. We hustled up that mountain, hoping to catch our friends. At last we came to the waterfall. It was a lovely waterfall, even though it presented no friends.
We paused for a few minutes. After the long car-ride and a nap, my 25 pound carry-on needed to eat. Nature had worked it’s natural valium on my frazzled nerves, the air was cool and pleasantly damp. The water really was beautiful. I perched on a tiny stone step facing the falls and fed my baby. It was like a scene out of Tarzan “I have carried my young up a mountain on my back and nursed him at the base of a waterfall.” Well, it would be like a scene out of Tarzan if Tarzan had in fact been female and a member of La Leche League.
Then, down the mountain, while the forest slipped into the dimmest of light, the rough spots of the river beside us gleaming white, the night songs sounding around us. Sawaya walked ahead with his iPhone flashlight on, his legs cutting dark shapes agains the bloom of light. I walked with my head down, eyeing the rough trail, my feet hurting because I picked shoes based on what I was wearing, not where I was walking. Wilder slept in his hot little hammock. We sang “Yundon bridge is fah-ying down, fah-ying down…” because Kingston was humming…not a song, just one note. One.Note.
We reached the parking lot, and our car, and made contact with our friends who had just sat down at a Mexican Restaurant just a hop skip and a jump away. We joined them, in an outside covered patio, and ate chips out of a plastic basket with little bowls of salsa and white cheese. We were served by a slim, young waiter who’d much rather be working on Project Runway than his Uncle’s restaurant. We ordered chimichangas. We talked and laughed. It ended well.