What goes through my head while I'm hiking alone for five days?
Well, after talking to animals and plants, meditating on the beach, begging whales to come closer and walking in a trance, I have plenty of time to have conversations with myself.
These may or may not have all been said aloud, multiple times - to myself, the birds and the bees, the plants...
OMG, what am I doing? I'm so cold. What if it rains the whole time? I hate winter, the cold and being in the rain. I can't escape the rain. What am I doing? What if it rains the whole time? How many more days do I have? (All said within the first 24 hours.)
Wow. Look at the water droplets on the leaves. They are so beautiful. Wow, look at the leaves. Look at the shapes. There are some beautifully shaped leaves. How wonderful is Mother Nature? And look, wow, a redback spider I nearly stepped on. Lucky I missed it. I should get a photo...
Thank you. I am so grateful. I am so lucky to be out here. How special is this? Thank you Weather Gods, you have listened. Look at the sky this side, look at the sky that side - I'll take this side thanks. Please. Wow, winter and summer in one sky. Eek. I hope that's not the 20mm of rain coming.
Damn. I love beaches. I can't get this stupid smile off my face. I want to stay here. Wow. It's a shipwreck beach. Look at all the rubbish? Look there's a shoe - it's a nice shoe. Wonder what happened? Ahh, I don't want to leave.
Yuck. Sweaty Betty. I'm going to stink from day one. I really should stop and take some layers off, but the rain is too hard. I'll just keep walking. Yuck. Sweating. Argh, my feet feel so wet too. And I've missed stepping in all the puddles. Why? Damn, look, I have a hole in my shoe. Should have looked at them before packing them. Damn it. Hope it doesn't rain every day. My feet are going to be horrible. Wet feet for five days - yuck.
The birds are singing songs. Sounds so pretty. It's natural music. How many different bird sounds can I hear?
The wind is singing songs. I can see the colours and tones of the wind blowing through like waves over the treetops. It's a bit spooky. Is this a place of cultural significance? I feel different here. Something in my soul.
Am I going to get bored? I'm going to get so bored. What am I going to do? I forgot my book and only have one magazine with me. Shit. Oh well, guess I should practice meditating. Be good for me. How many pages a day can I read?
So thankful it has stopped raining. I am grateful. I am blessed. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
Live a life that makes me happy. Life is a process, a journey of coming out of my shell.
I need more holidays alone.
Nature is true, amazing beauty. Nature makes me calm. This is amazing. I'm so happy and lucky to be here.
The bonus of hiking through winter. I don't need to keep an eye out for snakes. I can look around a bit more while walking. There are so many twigs laying around, if it were summer, I'd be jumping every minute or two. (On day 3 I realise that snakes don't hibernate on Kangaroo Island. The guys hiking the trail at the same time spotted 2.)
Shit. Up to 50km winds and up to 20mm of rain. Oh no. What if I get totally wet and can't dry out. I'll be freezing. I don't like it. Perhaps I can just keep walking today and do it all? Argh. Rain. Lots of it. Oh no.
F**K, so fricken cold. I'm freezing. Oh my god. What can I do? How long til morning (of course I don't know because I forgot to bring anything, except my flat phone, that tells the time). Really? I have three more nights of this? Oh shit. I'm not going to cope. I'm going to go crazy, not sleeping. This is horrible.
*Thankfully I find a way of keeping warm the following nights.
#16 (When my knee starts 'talking' to me, I speak straight back to it - out loud.) Be quiet and stay quiet. I don't want to hear from you on this hike.
Um, why on earth did I choose to be here and not lazing on a warm beach somewhere? I guess the only answer is 'I love adventure'. Although, I remember now that I said one to two-night hikes are best for me. Oops.
I feel you girl; I know you are there, now steady. (Yep, I actually start talking to the wind as it tries to blow me sideways while hiking the clifftop. It is that intense I can feel all the muscles in my legs and core battling to keep me upright.)
Thoughts are like the surrounds on the trail... always changing and never permanent or solely one thing.
Not a spoken word but written in my diary...
Cold afternoon, cold night, cold sleep, cold morning... only when I'm moving, am I not cold. Thankfully, I have the sun til 4-4.30pm to keep me warmish. But when that sun starts to drop, brr. It's cold. Which is about now and I start to think...
"Sitting by myself at camp as it gets colder and the dark creeps in. I wish the night to go quick. I want the hours to zoom by so I can crawl into my sleeping bag and be warm. Now that I know I can be warm."
I also sang songs. In English and Portuguese. I made songs up of strength and courage, of living a life you love but perhaps the most intense thought, however, was a realisation that brought tears to my eyes.
Most of my thinking time is while walking through the bush as I'm not as 'wowed' by the vistas, but this aha comes on a clifftop.
"I feel like I've been living in a box. I am finally pushing the top off and living the life I am meant to. A life of adventure, fun, love and discovery. I can have this life. And by doing that, I can show my kids how to live a life that makes them happy. Not a prescribed life that they think they have to live."
I wipe my eyes so I can see and walk on.