Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Torture Trail

My husband scoffed a little when I told him of my inspired 50 themed hiking dream...but not without reason.  When we went to Disney world a few years back I would have to take my cell phone with me when I left the condo--even to just get something out the car--because chances where I would get turned around and be eventually knocking at a stranger's door.  (those condos are like mazes, and they all look the have to give me that)  Another time we took a trip to Vancouver and I got insomnia and snuck out of the hotel to find sleeping pills...hours later I came thundering into our room sobbing hysterically because again, I got completely turned around and ended up wandering the streets thinking I'd never find my way back.  So how can I blame my husband for thinking that trying to find my way through the wilderness for 50 days has got to be the craziest idea ever?  (I told you I was advanced at crazy) 

So now I will write about my first hiking experience with that proves my husband's fears are all well founded.  I don't remember the name of this trail, only what my daughter now refers to it as..."the torture trail".  First of all, I didn't have a map or even instructions about the hike, (hiking lesson #1...just because a web site says "easy loop", that does not mean there are not endless connecting trails that anyone can easily get off course on.  ALWAYS bring a map or directions of some kind.  When you read about me and Mel's next hike, you'll see I did not learn lesson #1...ugh)  so as you can imagine we got completely lost in a stinging nettle and mosquito infested hell.  (and when I say "we", I mean me and Mel and five young children...double ugh)  The three youngest kids were FREAKING OUT...I mean, every time they would get stung by a stinging nettle they would cry out as if being shot...and I'll confess, I was getting seriously concerned.  (not that we'd get out--I knew we could turn around and find our way back.  But I did think I might actually kill my drama queen daughter if I had to listen to another second of her amped up cries and pleas for deliverance) 

It was at this time of utter despair when Melissa called out a SOS to God, "Please help us get the heck out of here!" (seconded by a very pathetic yelp from my daughter, "PLEASE GOD!")  I'll say this right here, I absolutely believe in prayer.  Not in some magical "God will do what I want if I just ask right"  type of thing, but a real "God is always watching and God will do what is best in every situation but enjoys when we ask and involve Him so He can be real in our lives" kind of thing.  And you know, that's just what He did.  I knew we didn't deserve to be rescued out of there, and come to think of it, maybe I would have learned lesson #1 better had we suffered back the way we came...but being that my daughter's life was in danger by my own hand, I'm so glad God had mercy!  To me it was an absolute miracle we suddenly stumbled upon a neighborhood (it really felt like there was no civilization for miles!) and a kind man who had a big enough rig to haul us all back to our minivan and safety. 

I knew God was smiling, and I was smiling too.  We were all smiling!  No more mosquitoes and stinging nettles for us--just ice cream at a local store and some fun pictures at Deception Pass Bridge.  (I'll try to post those later)  God is good!  But that doesn't mean we are done getting lost...Oyster Dome Trial is next, and it doesn't help my husband's faith in my directional abilities one bit.

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