I still am not settled in. Not even close. I have extolled the virtues and my love for Indianapolis and my neighborood on this site before. But I must admit, all things considered. I would rather be back in the Paria (prounounced par-EEE-ya).
Before going on the trip I had a few expectations to be sure, I had seen a few pictures. I had talked to Larry and some others who had taked this pilgramage before. There really is nothing that could have prepared me for what I saw, heard and experienced.
It would be a complete and total lie if I were to say that I had ever attempted anything more challenging, physically or mentally than this hike. I haven't rode a bike across state. I jog a bit. Kick around a soccer ball when I can. I hadn't spent a week in the wilderness carrying a 45 pound pack on my back, hoping that I had everything I needed in the pack.
Just a few days removed from touching back down it might sound like hyperbole to say that this was the most rewarding week of my life as well, but it's not hyperbole. As the days and weeks go on and the further I get removed from the week and sights, smells, sounds, and memories...tons and tons of memories, I am only too sure that my fondness for the week I spent there will increase. So yes, the most rewarding week as well. I said it. I'll stand by it.
5 nights. 6 days. I saw sights I could not have prepared my eyes for. I was sore as hell. My feet were never dry. My pack never seemed to get any lighter. I heard God speak clearly through the nature and through my trail mates.
5 days, 6 nights. I hiked the Buckskin and Paria with Sparrow, Dickon, and Fryar and I am a better man for it.
(pictures and much more reflections to come later in the week.)