Drowned with too much time complaining how dull my life at work is, pushes me to my limits. My itchy feet are too stubborn that they can pull my whole well-being to a run off. Careful planning never exists in my lists of vocabularies coz there's only one word which enwraps my backpack, "wanderlust"!
Luckily, I had a two-week vacation from the last week of April to the first quarter the following month. I was restless so, I spent the first chapter in the central part of Vietnam. That was indeed one of the most memorable trips I've had. Then the second half of the game started at a nine-hour trip from Ha Noi to Sa Pa-farther north of Vietnam. To count, it was my third visit and obviously, I couldn't get enough of the place and even considered retiring there one day.
The most exciting part of the game was the Fansipan challenge.- the highest mountain in Indochina. I bet my new pair of grayish pink Nike running shoes, Snickers and Hershey's kisses together with a hundred bucks worth of black leggings were enough for the sprint. Two days before the venture, I pacified myself with the shivery weather in Sa Pa, and stuffed my face with grilled meat paired with the traditional apple wine. Honestly, I was a bit drunk but I tried to control myself from being teased.
Before the sun hit us, we began packing up-"this is it", we thought. Everything was ready and in two hours we were picked up by a van which took us to the starting block located a few kilometers away from the "Love Waterfalls". We started the climb in ten minutes. My feet were so uneasy during the first few wet, rocky tracks on its way up. "How could you manage to sing while everyone is short of breath?", he said. "This climb would kill me without my favorite song", I replied. Each course had different faces-muddy, twisted, steep, narrow, slippery, unfriendly, and a bit scary.
Lunch was served on the first stop after a few- hour hike. An hour was enough to start the next tread. At 1630, the tents on the last stop welcomed us. Dinner was the best time to get to know each stranger we encountered along the way. I was worn out that I could hardly move my tired legs as well as it was impossible to open my mouth, yet decided to walk around the numbing field. It was dark , and stormy, and everyone was almost asleep.
Since I couldn't induce myself to bed, I dropped in the dirty kitchen to warm my spinal cords with the bonfire. The tour guide handed me a cup of hot ginger tea while chewing real life stories with one another. It was midnight when I got on to the idea that I was more privileged than others. His stories were touching that it dawned on me to be more grateful for what I have and to be content for who I am now. "Even if these random people give you too much stress, and no matter how much grievance you feel for your boss, you should finish the race fairly and passionately", he said. Gosh, he was right!
On an algid, bone-chilling, showery, stormy morning we kicked off the top of Fansipan. I was physically drained, and I thought of giving up but my soul was brave enough to win the race. Yes, in three hours we reached the wet, frigid, foggy peak of the mountain. I thanked God for the amazing scenery.
We made it down to the town at exactly 6pm. My limbs were torpid, I couldn't even bend my droopy knees. Our last night in Sa Pa was staggering and we rewarded ourselves with a foot massage after dinner. Then we headed back to Ha Noi the next day.
No matter how bleary I was, I thought I would rather drag my feet again up to Fansipan rather than corrupting my flesh and spirit in the reality of life. That ascend made me a fighter emotionally!