Sunday, 13 September 2009

Summer memories from August 2009 1. Yet


19 July 2009

This day is a YET day, as I am writhing in pain but I am not writing about pain.

After two days of driving in rain and strong winds, we arrived to our summer base camp at 2060 meters in Arolla.

Today we went down by foot to Les Hauderes. This is a 2-3 hrs journey, rather 3 for us, as I am having a bad lumbago or sciatic attack (maybe both, hm it really hurts both at the lower back and in the leg) and I had to stop frequently, plus we stopped each time we saw bouldering or rock climbing places (there was a nice clean rock with bolted routes at the hotel Aiguille de la Tsa, near the Camping, than we saw another bolted rock a little below Satarma, just behind a chapel, but in between the two there was again a Klettergarten with more difficult routes). Then we stopped each time Zoli discovered a rare flower or yet another species of butterflies. I was silently (well, sometimes moaning) suffering these cramps in muscles and tendons, and only being helpful when it came to linguistics: yes, papillon is masculin but hirondelle is feminine...

When we reached the village, we found the main square full of people, market stands, buffets with music, artisans displaying their works... book antiquaires etc. By then I really needed to sit down, Zoli really needed to eat (me too)... so finally we found a place to eat, right in front of a mobile children’s climbing wall. It was interesting to watch them, how they are temerary or how they fear and give up, how they don’t realise that they have feet too, that they could straighten their legs and would reach higher... How some of them keep trying and trying, how much energy they have...

Then we got bored of the townlike noise and went out in the woods again, slowly trudging up towards Ferpecle... It was interesting to find those brown wooden houses on every steep slope, where even cars cannot drive up, and sometimes to see that yes, they still go up to the least expected narrow pathways too. Alas, we never reached Ferpecle, as we had to descend in time for the last bus to Arolla... With this sciatica I wouldn’t have been able to walk up three hours long... By the time we got „home”, I hardly could walk. But at least I wasn’t angry at myself or at my fate that I had to spend my first day of holidays bed-ridden, down-trothed by sickness.

And the most important things: the weather was all day long splendid, sunny with a mild wind and some nice white clouds to make mountains even more beautiful. With all this pain it was still fantastic to walk on narrow pathways and feel the smell of herbs and flowers of an immense biodiversity, unaltered by planted species... I feel partly like a lame duck, unable to move to sit and to lie (what else is there, one can do with a renewed ache ?!) BUT partly like a recharged battery!

Zoli ran out, and almost climbed another slope up to 2800 m, just to take 30 more pictures of the same Mont Collon also before and when the sun goes down J.