I read recently that travel should not be easy. That part of the reason to travel is to be challenged. This resonated with me deeply because as amazing as my summer trip was it definitely had its ups and downs.
I started planning this trip around November 2016. I found and booked a place to stay in December 2016. Then in January 2017 I found out I needed to have major surgery that has a fairly long recovery time. So even months prior to my trip I was concerned I wasn’t going to be able to explore the way I wanted to. But I was determined to keep my plans, so I spent the months between the surgery and leaving in July working towards my summer goals.
The night before I left for my trip I had a bit of a panic attack. It’s scary leaving your comfort zone for a month. And even with all the excitement and anticipation there’s also this worry about how things are going to go. After a few tears to release those emotions. I hit the road.
I would say my first set back was hiking Annette Lake. It was my 7th hike on the trip. The bugs were awful, absolutely awful. The hike was hard, harder then I thought it was going to be. And I struggled to keep my spirits up. I saw two snakes on the way back down. I hate snakes. My legs were wobbly. My back hurt. I was just done. So done and over it.
The most important thing though is the next day I still got up and went out exploring again.
A few days later Frankie, the wonderful Frankie, escaped the yard where I was staying. She ran into someone else’s yard and just wanted to play. That person wanted to call animal control to help catch her. Which of course terrified me. It was the last thing that I needed. I was able to get her back with out the help of animal control and my Airbnb host fixed the fence right away. However, I definitely had thoughts, thoughts of packing it all up and heading home.
I decided that I needed a day not exploring nature and decided to explore Seattle, shockingly without the dogs. I found a sitter on Rover.com and headed to Seattle to do all the touristy things possible. I saw the Space Needle, Pike’s Market and toon the Underground Tour. Which all was awesome. But when I went back to my car the back passenger window was shattered and some of my things were stolen. Including my camera lenses. Honestly, after this I wanted to pack it up and head home. I spent time on the phone with my friend and my dad. Tears were shed. Fear and the feeling of violation was present. I called my insurance company and got my window fixed the next day. And I stayed to continue exploring with my pups.
There was also the hikes that I couldn’t complete because of the surgery. I hope to go back in 2018 and finish them.
There were hikes that I ended up not doing because I was just tired, physically I couldn’t handle trying to summit anything. I replaced them with different easier things. Like the inhabited ghost town.
And our little excursion to Leavenworth.
We did an urban hike through Seattle.
We went to a private dog park and agility training course.
While the trip did not go smoothly, it was perfect in its own way. It showed exactly how much I could overcome and that I could keep going. I saw so many beautiful things. It was truly amazing. Every aspect of the trip added to the entire experience and it would not have been as meaningful of an adventure if it hadn’t had both the highs and the lows.