When we hiked along the ridge of the Tejeda volcanic basin, I was so very sick.
I was coughing up more than just a storm, trying to stop my congested face from getting in the way of the spectacular views. The pathways along the ridge were narrow and rocky full of loose rocks, the kind that are slippery when you step at the wrong angle or a misplace a toe and can fall from under you without warning, no matter how far the drop. We didn’t have proper shoes, gear – we had only two water bottles, an old pair of sneakers and your torn up pair of vans – or sunglasses and the mid morning sun was already too hot for out chilled Canadian bones. As you walked, the landscape changed from rocky to lush and full of succulents and their little pink flowers with different grasses and trees spread out, dotting the mountainside. Quickly it would switch back to rocky and the caves would make themselves visible on the rock face however many meters above us, making me want to scope out ways to get up and explore them further.
The views were spectacular. Around one bend, a neverending string of mountains, each one starting where another left off, falling farther behind the haze; around another was a beautiful example of traditional terraced agriculture. There was a spectacular bird’s eye view of some of the ridiculous mountain roads, made it look as though Z had visited and carved his signature into the mountain side and the turns on the road sharp and frequent.
I would give the world to be able to do it once more, less sick and congested and more acutely aware of the beauty around me (and the legitimate danger I had put myself in by being ill-prepared in such a situation) – regardless, what a spectacular morning it was. Acusa Seca to Acusa Verde to Tejeda.