Mahika Pandey The morning was cool when we stepped off the bus and stretched our legs. Our hike was to start and begin at a resort in (start place). At a restaurant, we loaded our back packs with water bottles while the talking lightly and musing of the journey ahead. The journey had been short: only an hour. Our group had assembled at the Deerwalk complex for breakfast before boarding the bus and setting off. We had pulled into the resort at around 10:00. We were led down the road into a grassy area by a local guide. He pointed at a very muddy, steep incline that we were supposed to climb. The inclined path was the first leg of our journey: it was also the worst! The trail was narrow, uphill, and infested with leeches: most of us were bitten. We came upon many slippery patches of ground and sudden downhill sloped areas, where everyone was forced to jump. After a half hour of complaints on my part and difficult hiking, we took rest at a wayside restaurant. We gave each other much needed leech checks and a number of socks and shoes had to be shook clean. We decided to abandon the road less traveled and take the main road for the remainder of the hike.
The road was rocky and winded up the mountain. The atmosphere was light as walked, glad that we were free of the treacherous path we'd started on.
The road was rocky and winded up the mountain. The atmosphere was light as walked, glad that we were free of the treacherous path we'd started on. However, the rocky road soon became muddy and slippery. The incline steepened and every step was taken more cautiously, as not to slip and fall. We headed back down soon after. The wet ground was even harder to navigate downhill. When we reached the rockier road we had an option: take the long, leech-free route, or the leech-infested shortcut. Without much hesitation we chose the safe way out. The downfall of the safe route: there was no shade from the relentless sun, and the road was endless. Under the glare of the sun the road spiraled upwards as we walked along it. After about an hour of walking, we again reached the resort in (end place). We sat gratefully in the indoors and downed cold drinks. We stayed at the restaurant for three hours, eating, drinking, and even dancing! The music came on and a dance floor was created in the middle of the floor. The dancing was spirited and some of the tipsier adults provoked lots of laughter with their dancing. We ended our time at the restaurant by taking turns standing in front of the camera and talking briefly about the hike. When we finally piled back into the bus it was 5:00. The ride back was alive with a game of Antakshari! Everyone enjoyed the raucous singing and light talk. We pulled into Deerwalk at around 6:30. After farewells, we all headed back home. The hike had been a short and tumultuous, but great fun nevertheless!