New blog post, same old dilemma – procrastination. My last post was about our Chicago days. That was weeks ago. I have around four states worth of blog posts to do. Five if you count our stopover at Delaware. In due time, I’ll cover those states. But for now, I’ll be focusing on California – The Golden State.
I’m currently staying at my friend’s (Jea) relatives here at San Jose, California, along with JJ and KR. Apparently, initials as nicknames are all the rage. Four has always been a good number. The folks here all speak our native tongue (Waray), except for KR. It’s fun speaking in the language I grew up with. We still have to adjust and speak our national language so as not to leave out KR in our conversations. Plus, there are two kids and a black chihuahua here. My kind of home.
As much as I’d like to share my Cali experience, I’m afraid I have to limit this post to today’s events. Initially, I thought I could cram at least one state’s worth of travel here. I thought wrong. Right now, I bet you’re wondering what happened today that would be worth an entire post. Well, if you’re not, I’m still gonna continue…
I climbed a mountain!
Yes, that’s right. I hiked all the way up of Mission Peak – a peak just to the east of Fremont, California. The mountain is around 2,200 ft. high. Imagine that. A skinny and out-of-shape little individual achieving something very unexpected.
The hike was a huge challenge, for me. Honestly, I was unsure if I was up to it. I was unprepared. But that was taken care of. I put on my Sketchers shoes and my Adidas shorts paired with my orange DC shirt. I contemplated whether or not I should wear my Under Armor thermal suit. It took a long time before I decided to wear it just in case. We packed some granola bars, candy, and water bottles in a black Nike shoe string bag.
The hike started at around 5 P.M. We made sure to warm up and prep for the long hike. Our guide was Kuya Jobin and his friend. For some strange reason, no one remembers his name. I’m pretty sure he introduced himself. Anyway, we took the path at the rightmost part. I recall Kuya Jobin mentioning a name for the path, so I guess the various trails have their own respective names. I should also mention that Jea forgot to bring the Nike bag. Smooth move. Peace, Jea!
On our way up, our topics were so random. We discussed just about anything we could think of. Politics, Philippines, prayers, etc. We even agreed that cable cars should be installed for ease of access. Probably because we weren’t used to walking long distances or climbing an actual mountain. No complaints, though.
Mission Peak is barren. It almost reminded me of a desert at first glance. Dry and chock full of sand. I felt like James Franco from 127 Hours venturing to unknown territory. I tried avoiding the image of being stuck under a rock. That was not a suitable image. Seriously.
Halfway up, the chilly breeze started creeping up on us. Glad I had my thermal clothes on. Wearing shorts did not help at all. There were benches along the way. We stopped on almost every bench that we came across on our trail.
After almost two hours of hiking, I was glad to see the top, which is what Mission Peak is known for. Rock formations were illuminated by the moon and a post with vandals stood firmly on the ground. The summit rewarded us with a breathtaking night view of Silicon Valley, Santa Cruz mountains, and the bustling city. It was worth every ounce of fear, sweat, and energy.
Precious memories like these are extremely rare. All of these are already archived in my little memory bank.
Incidentally, we ate at Jollibee for dinner. The last time I ate at Jollibee was roughly one year ago. Reunited and it felt so good. Or should I say tasted so good?