The art of survival

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April 25th 2007
Published: August 6th 2007
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Making new friendsMaking new friendsMaking new friends

Mary, always on the look-out expanding her friends circle, meets some ladies
Tired of the same old pampered way of life (escalators to our destinations, lunch in our cafeterias, street food at ever corner, warm beds with only the occasional cockroach or mosquito, affordable bottled water at every bodega) mary and I planned to challenge ourselves and our friendship. Would we still be friends after one of us (me) forget to bring her own bottled water? Would we still be friends after one of us (me) wasn't a girl scout and therefore lacked any ability to properly build a fire? Would we still be alive after hiking for 2 hours, carrying all our supplies on our back like mules? Would we find our way with our weak directions? Most importantly would we be able to roast our marshmallows?!!?

Saturday saw us arise early with anticipation for an exciting adventure. Luckily, there would be no motobikes all weekend, so we headed out the door with confidence. My minor tummy ache delayed the start only a short while. Upon arrival in Hong Kong, we were met with a steady rain and gloomy clouds, but nevertheless, I had brought my umbrella and a rain coat and we both had bathing the light rain was surmountable. After a quick lunch at Mickey D's and 2 semi-long bus rides we were at the foot of the path..... It looked like a far distance to our destination, but hung to the fact that we had all day and could take our time. I envisioned an easy afternoon stroll with breathtaking views.....

Stroll it was not and views were lacking. A heavy fog prevented any picture taking and awareness of location and the stroll was a series of down then up and then down....straight down. You know that pit of your stomach feeling that you get when it is hard to walk down a hill because it is so steep and all you can think about is that you will infact be going the opposite way in less than 24 hours. I kept inspecting the passersby, seeing if they had yet succumb to fatigue....assessing my future progress.

We manage to make it to the beach and found some bottle water, priced 4 times the expected amount...The beach was far and wide and only scatted with one other tent.....We begin to stake our claim and scavage for firewood. Unfortunately, trees were missing and the only wood available was washed-up semi-wet logs. Not a good outlook for those marshmallows.

Nevertheless, we relaxed, and munched on snacks, mary took a swim, i read "The devil wears prada", the clouds stayed, the sun remained hidden, other hikers came and went, a few more tents popped up, we gathered more wood, and played a few rounds of cards.

Around 6, what looked like the worst storm was rolling in....which would mean the end of us and for our fire. But the rain never came and our fire....after too many attempts finally became a reality. We roasted marshmallow after marshmallow and due to our lack of a clock crawled into our tent at, i'm sure, was the bedtime of a 4 year olds

The hike back was worse…..much worse. After a bout of diarrhea the night before (nothing like diarrhea while camping in a tent…..unzip….find nice spot in sand….zip….unzip….find another nice spot, avoid last spot….zip….unzip…find a completely new spot, try to remember old spots….zip….and repeat) I was feeling pretty week, but regardless, the first hill was literally the stairway to heaven and then down was refreshing only to be followed by the longest uphill in history. But the views
Home sweet homeHome sweet homeHome sweet home

Marshmallows, tuna, crackers, and a blanket...we were set.
made up for it as the fog finally cleared and pictures could be taken. I spent the rest of the afternoon either in the bathroom or on mary’s couch……we survived, barely….

Additional photos below
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Do we have to pay extra for the petting zoo?Do we have to pay extra for the petting zoo?
Do we have to pay extra for the petting zoo?

An hour into our camping adventure, the cows came home!
Fire, we made fire!Fire, we made fire!
Fire, we made fire!

and before the boys where were down the beach.
Before I put my face on!Before I put my face on!
Before I put my face on!

Naked grandma use to always say in the morning she hadn't put here face i'm just checking to see if i look as scary as i think i do...yup!
We nearly made itWe nearly made it
We nearly made it

before the last hike, when we still knew how to smile

3rd May 2007

i'm baaack
Mandy_ finally able to take a break from work work work at my new job to catch up on your blog. Can't believe I won't be able to visit you before you leave. Hate how the timing did not work out. for the whole year. . . but I really do need to brush up on my Chinese anyway, which let's be honest, could take years in itself :)

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