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Saturday, September 19, 2009

Body Talk

Together with Dan, Ching and Mark (Ching's friend from the UK), I attempted my first multi-day mountain trek in South America.

How did it turn out? We'll let our guest bloggers tell you all about it. No... their names are not Ching and Mark (not yet, anyway.) Introducing the storytellers for this blog entry... here's *drumroll*... MY BODY!

What the.... Yes, you heard right. My body parts are guest starring. Just read on lah.

Flashback to July this year:

Eyes: Hey hey hey Fingers, quit flipping the pages of the guidebook and stop riiigghhtt.... there! Yeah, yeah, that's it! Page 918... move down... and STOP! Brain, hey, Brain, wake up! What do you make of it, the 4-day Santa Cruz trek in Cordillera Blanca?

Brain: *yawn* Huh? What? Hmmm... best Andean views in Peru, icy waterfalls and lakes, verdant valleys, mossy meadows... Hmmm, sounds good... Well, what do the other body parts say? After all, you guys are going to be doing all the work. I'm just going to be carried all the way. Heh. Heh heh. Cool huh.

Heart: Just imagine the wondrous top-of-the-world feeling at the highest point of the climb!
Legs: Fwah, we might have to climb really high. But we can do it lah. Yeah, rock on! Woot!
Fingers: Feeling trigger happy already!
Eyes: Look at those views in the photos! Amazing! Let's do it!
Stomach: Sure *gurgle* As long as I get fed. Do I get to try alpaca steak? *gurgle*
Lungs: Yeah, yeah, whatever. Fresh mountain air sounds good.

Brain: Okay, set! US$120 for 4 days sounds pretty doable. We can fit that into our budget. We start on 10 September so that Ching can join us for the trek.

Heart: Yaaaaay! I miss Ching. Will be really good to see her again!

Spirit: Yeah! That's the, er... spirit!

10 September 2009

(After 4 hours in a van from Huaraz, with a break for breakfast)

Legs: Hey guys, this trek has been pretty comfy so far huh! We're just snuggling up together and enjoying the ride.

Brain: *yawn* Huh? Whatever. I woke up so darn early today. I... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Lungs: Yeah, it's a good start. What thin mountain air? I'm doing fiiiinnnne.... aaaahhhhhh...

Stomach: *grumble* What type of breakfast were we given back there?! Ugh. You call that food?! I don't think so!!! I'm still trying to digest the stone-cold breadroll *grumble*

Eyes: Omigod omigod omigod!!! Check out the views of the lakes!!!!

Heart & Spirit: Fwaaaaaaaaaaahhhh!!!!!!

Beautiful shade of blue

Ears: Hey guys, guys, listen up! The guide's saying that the name of this lake is Laguna 69...

Brain (waking up): What what? Did someone say 69.... hee hee *giggle*

Heart: Eeeeyeeerrr! Shut up, Brain. Some body parts are trying to enjoy themselves here. It's a wonderful feeling and great privilege to witness Mother Nature's beautiful handiwork in person.

Chingching Chingching goes climbing! With us!

Laguna 69 - a "girl" lake and a "boy" lake snuggle up to each other

We survived pupillage and our first few fledgling months together. We never imagined then that we would be trekking in Peru one day.

(30 minutes after starting the trek)

Legs: Hey guys, this is easy peasy! We just keep going downhill. I'm on the roll! Yeah!

Lungs: Yeah, rock on, Leggies! I can handle this speed. Hardly working up a sweat here.

Eyes: Guys, guys, why you moving so fast? We don't have time to look at the views! Hey! Slow down!

Brain: Keep going, Legs, keep going! Keep pumping while you can, it's going to get harder once we hit the uphill slopes. We gotta keep time here. Hup hup hup! Eyes.... shuddup. Nothing much to see here - just a few dusty houses and brown hills and..... watch out for that horse poop! Sheesh, keep an eye on the trail, for goodness sake!

Fingers: We're bored!!! And do we have to cling on to these trekking poles all the time? Can't somebody else do this?! Why does it always have to be us who have to carry everything?!

Stomach: Good gawd, the banana they gave me for lunch was so overripe... it was gross. And Brain, why did you order Fingers to remove the ham from the sandwich? It might have been okay to eat but Fingers fed it all to that stray puppy and I was given plain bread only. Hello? Are you stupid or what?! Eyes told me about the chocolate bar stashed away in the backpack... I want chocolate! You hear me? I want it! *pout*

View at some point of the trek

(1 hour later...)

Lungs: We've been climbing such steep slopes *gasp gasp* Lungs to Brain, Lungs to Brain! We need to stop! I... can't... breathe...


Legs: Gee, guys... since when did all of you get so heavy? *crumple*


Eyes: Where's everybody else? They're so far ahead that we've lost sight of them!


Brain: Guys, we're really slow! We need to hurry and catch up with the rest. Nose... let in more air and pump them to Lungs!


Nose: No way! The cow, donkey, horse, sheep and pig poop really stink! It's all over the trail!!!


Heart: This is really hard.... I don't feel too confident about doing this....

Stomach: Ineedtopuke! Ineedtopuke! NOW NOW NOW!!!

Eyes: Ohhh yuckssss, look at that banana puree hit the ground. Oh for goodness sake, Stomach! Can't you control yourself?!?!

Fingers: Can't talk now... busy pushing hair out of the way of the pu... arrgghh! It got us!!

Spirit: Come on guys, work together now, we can do this. We can...


Brain: Oh no, here we go again... Please stop. I'm hurting badly enough from the lack of oxygen.

Stomach: No no, not puke again... it's SH*T!!! Tummy, be prepared for take off.... Legs, get us behind that abandoned hut.... NOW!!!!

Eyes & Nose (in unison): OH MY GOD! EWWWWWWW!!!!!

Legs: Avoid.... avoid.....

Stomach (meek voice): Okaaaay. I feel a bit better now.... sorry guys.

Recovering with some hydration salts, courtesy of Ching

Eyes: Hey guys, psssst, guys. Are you all feeling better now? Good. Look at those awesome views of the snowcapped peaks! Aren't they just grand?

Heart: Yes, so very majestic! I'm so happy to be doing this with Dan and Ching!

Spirit: Yes, that's the er... spirit! We can do this! I'm feeling inspired, energised, motivated!

The only pic of one of us actually with the mountain

Ears: The guide just said that we're going to scale up to the biggest peak, yeah, that really high one. We're gonna get really really near, he says.

Lungs: What?!
Legs: What?!
Fingers: What?!
Stomach: What?!

Ears: Are you guys deaf? Have you no sense of hearing? He said...

Lungs: *gasp*
Legs: *faint*
Fingers: *cramp*
Stomach: BRAIN!!!!! EYES!!!! Did you guys know anything about having to scale up to 4,760m above sea level?!!?!

Eyes: Yeah, we saw those numbers printed in the book. But we couldn't really figure out what they meant, so we told Brain and...

Lungs, Legs, Fingers, Stomach (in unison): AND?!?!?

Brain: Erm, well, erm... I just thought cool, yeah, cool. And erm, didn't really evaluate how you guys would take to the altitude. I guess, er, I didn't realise how it would affect us, as a body... and now it's only going to get harder... and colder....

Fingers: We're all going to freeze! Oh woe, oh woe are we...

Yeah, that's where we were suppose to be...

Brain: Okay, okay, I can manage this, the situation is under control... Body, give everything you possibly can to Dan the alpaca to carry. That includes trekking poles, backpack, camera, extra fleece layer... Yeah, everything goes to the alpaca!

Dan the alpaca

(3 hours later...)

Legs (crawling into tent): Okay everyone, we finally made it to camp for the night. But we're feeling terrible! Very weak. How's everyone feeling?

Brain: I'm in pain!

Fingers: We're frozen till it hurts!

Lungs: We hurt too. And we can't breathe. We can't continue like this. The air is only going to get thinner and colder as we move higher tomorrow, and the day after.

Stomach: I'm running on empty. But I can't eat anything. I feel positively ill.

Heart: But I still want to complete this trek. I really want to do it.

Spirit: I'm crushed.

Brain: The alpaca's worn out too. If we suffer 100% trekking to the next campsite tomorrow, the alpaca will suffer 200% carrying our things and himself up the mountain. I've decided that we will do the sensible thing and turn back to Huaraz first thing tomorrow morning. Now everyone go to sleep. Stomach, try to drink some soup first. Goodnight!

(At 1.37am)

Stomach: HURL!!!!

Fingers: Grab the plastic bag, grab the plastic bag!! EWWWWW!!! It's orange! Crap, this is one heavy bag!

(Alpaca groggily rises from the commotion, gingerly picks up the bag by its handles and places it outside the tent. Lovingly sayangs the sick person and drifts back to sleep.)

(11 September, 7am)

All set to trek 4hrs back to the starting point, complete with silly hats and funny faces. Or funny hats and silly faces.

Brain: Hey guys, I don't know about you guys, but I'm pretty excited to be heading back - warm beds, real food, hot showers, clean and dry clothes...

Heart: I'm a bit bummed at not being able to complete this trek. But hey, as long as Dan is with me, I'm happy. And I'm grateful to Ching for coming with us and watching over us. She's a really good friend.

Spirit: I choose love and friendship over bragging rights to this mountain, anytime!

Eyes: And look! We get to ride in the back of a chicken truck, back into town!!!

Everyone: Woot! Wave for the camera! Uno, Dos, Tres..... HOLAAAA!!!!!!

Getting cosy with the locals... and their corn, melons and dirty chicken coops (with no chickens)

Eyes: And omigod! Looklooklooklooklook! It's SNOWING!!! Wanna go out and have a look?!

Rest of Body: Err, no. Cold!

Eyes: But everyone's outside in the snow. The driver, the Dutch couple, Dan, Ching. Ching's got something in her hands.... *squint*... it's, huh? Toilet paper? She's ohhh... OHHHHHH.

Don't bother searching for Ching and her toilet paper in this pic. The photographer had some decency not to snap in that direction!

(At 8pm, back at the guesthouse in Huaraz)

Brain: I'm calling for a meeting. Everybody tune in please. We need to come to a consensus about attempting future treks, such as the Lares Trek to Machu Picchu and the icy trails in Torres del Paine in Chile, cos we will need to work well together if we are ever going to complete any trek that we start.

Brain (aside to Right Hand): Psst, RH, are you taking notes? Please draft the Notes of Meeting within 24 hours for me to vet and approve.

Brain: I vote for a sensible take on this, so all in favour of never attempting a mountain trek again, say "aye!"

Lungs: Aye! Yeah, let's just take the train to Machu Picchu, can?
Brain: Aye!
Right Leg: Aye!
Left Leg: Aye!
Fingers: Aye aye aye aye aye aye aye aye aye aye!
Eyes (forlornly): Sigh... well, okay... aye, we guess. But it's such a pity to miss those beautiful views....
Nose: Aye!
Stomach: Ayeayeayeayeayeayeayeayeayeaye!!!
Butt: Hey guys, I know I haven't said much throughout this whole fiasco, but hey, sitting on a train sounds good.
Spirit (clearing throat): *fake cough* aye-hem *fake cough*

Heart (stubbornly): Well, I wouldn't exactly say never again...

Spirit (fierce whisper to Heart): Shush!! Don't let those wimpy body parts (and the alpaca) hear you! But yeah, I know what you mean. Someday, my friend, someday... We'll make it.


h3Artily said...

I like this guest appearances! idea idea. =)

aud said...

Yilin's lips look pururlish in one of the fotos...

Tracy Su said...

What a whirlwind! You wanna consider becoming a screenwriter for action films? or kids' cartoons?

Ohhhh, I get it, getting in training for the future kids. That's what this is! heh

Granny Smith Bandit said...

Goodness! I didn't know all this was going on during the trek! Honestly you look fine, just slightly tired! Oh and this is how I would some up the trek: Santa Cruz Trek: USD120, Chicken truck trip home: S/10, Strawberry Jam at Yungay: S/1.50, Entertaining my friends on our way back to Huarez: FOC, Doing "it" at one of the highest peaks in the snowstorm: Priceless.

Yi Lin said...

Aine: Yeah, it's fun! Only if you hear voices in your head...

Aud: Aiyoh, your spelling so koyak... never go to school ah :P Purplish, my dear. And yah, another one of my friends just commented on the same thing!

Trace: Heh, now with the DanYilin smallies in our hands, we will be having more crazy imaginary conversations. Kids... I think I'll scare them off with ideas of talking lungs and stomachs.

GSB: You are pwetty, you are seksi, you are chio... and a damn lot of fun to be with. Even when I was feeling awful on the trek. The journey back made it all worthit, strawberry jam and all.

We considered amending the snowy photo by adding a BIG arrow and caption "Ching Ching is sh*tting HERE" but too lazy to a upload new photo for the post. Look out for it on FACEBOOK though... we gonna tag you.

forex course said...

Very nicely describe, All shots are very good. I like this post. Its very hard to do so. I hope you all have enjoy it very much.

Yi Lin said...

Hi Forex Course,

Welcome to our blog and thanks for reading. Glad you enjoyed the post!

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