Prior to our little boy being born, my husband had a 2-day work conference in Tucson, Arizona. I haven’t been to that state so I went with him and his business partner with the knowledge that I will be by myself for most of the time while they were at the said conference. I figured I could shop, drive around and hike… The last one terrified me. While I have hiked countless times by myself in MN, I still don’t like to do it by myself in a very unfamiliar location. However, I didn’t want to just stay in the hotel room or by the pool so I did manage to get the courage to hike the Northwest side of Saguaro National Park area. 😀
And yes, I did learn something and here are some of them:
1. It’s not that scary
It’s not just once that I have mentioned that I don’t like getting lost. I did have to look at the map, study it and made sure I get familiar with where I was going. I also dealt with the fear of snakes and the thought of being snatched up by a stranger by being aware of my surroundings and knowing what to do just in case. Hey, I am still here. 🙂
2. Solitude gives me the chance to observe and focus
Oftentimes when I am with a companion, I give most of my energy to making sure that the people I am with are comfortable. Being by myself gave me the chance to chanel that into observing more, focusing and seeing the details of the things around me.
3. You get rewarded when you wing it
On my drive back to the hotel, I spotted a sign that says gallery (that was all I could read from a distance). I slowed down and decided to check “DeGrazia Gallery in the Sun.” It has so much warmth and history, which features rock floors, interior murals and an open-air roof. The literature mentioned that DeGrazia and his crew made the traditional adobe bricks of the building themselves, which were baked onsite by the Arizona sun.
4. You meet kind people who are willing to help
I did get lost trying to find my way back (during the hike) as I didn’t really have (planned) maps and I was just using my phone, and those saguaros look the same and confusing but I did meet a couple along the way who walked me back close to the trailhead. I went back the next day to hike again more confidently.
5. I can trust and love myself
They said that “wherever you are in the world, you’ll always have yourself.” I am always my worst critic but as I sometimes travel alone (not just the hikes in AZ but life in general), I have learned that I can take on new challenges and have managed come out of it in one piece. I have learned to enjoy the beauty of nature and nurture/love the confidence I have built within me.
But if you ask me if I will I ever do it more often, nah, I like sharing myself with someone. 😀
What are your thoughts about hiking solo? Do share. 🙂
P.S. Most important lesson, I do
need want my husband as my companion. 😉 😉
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