In a few days I embark upon my sixth Grand Canyon walkabout! I cannot wait to get out there and soak it all in.
In 2011, as my marriage was ending, my ex convinced me that we should still go on this trip together. He sold it as a "rekindling" type of trip. Stupidly, I totally fell for it. It ended up being the worst trip of my life! I don't have a single picture from that year because I care to remember none of it (except my good friend and her husband that joined us--how awkward for them!). He ignored me the whole time and talked on the phone to his "friend". I cried constantly and felt so angry and frustrated.
This is the year that I drive a car from the North Rim to the South Rim--about four hours. It is an absolutely gorgeous drive and it makes me so happy to watch the landscape roll by. Last time I cried for that whole four hours. It was pure misery.
This year will be different! I am different. I have some awesome playlists ready to go on my ipod and I plan to bring some cash so I can shop at the little Native American jewelry stands that are all along the road. I am going to enjoy this drive and reflect on an amazing two years of transformation. I shall redeem the trip from hell and replace with a trip of beauty, growth and awesomeness!
Then I'm hiking down the Bright Angel Trail about 3 miles to wait for my dad. I'll bring my kindle but it is far more likely that I will spend the waiting time talking to other hikers! It is my favorite thing to do--provide encouragement to hikers coming up and meeting people from all over the world.
Once I meet up with Jimbo, we'll head back up. I will be fresh and spry while the rest of them slog it out. :) Then we all meet for dinner (it ends up being a loosely knit group of 40 people!) and tell stories of our days.
I just can't wait. :)
On a separate note, this will be the first time I've traveled alone since 1996. Crazy!