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Lessons from a Mountain Climb

1. DO NOT OVERPACK - bring only what's necessary. By that, I mean only things you cannot live without, like water, food, toothbrush and extra clothing. Leave your kikay kit behind. You won't have any time to powder your nose as no one will kiss it except the scorching sun.
2. BE READY - sure, you have everything need, prepared for everything, else but you can never be ready for everything. Physically, mentally and even emotionally, you have to be ready for emergencies and small nuances. There is no such thing as a "perfect experience".
3. TRUST YOURSELF - I am not an experienced climber nor will i ever be an expert. But I trust myself enough to know that I can do it. I heard it said before that only you can set you own limitations. No one can tell you what you cannot do. Sure, there are times I almost wanted to faint from heat and exhaustion, almost screamed for help in carrying by backpack but I held myself opting for a 100% experience. Now at least I can boast of doing it all on my own.
4. WATER IS IMPORTANT - we have grown up knowing this but you will never really realize just how important until you go climbing and realize that your water bottle is half empty and your not even halfway there. Then finally, you reach the summit and your dillema collides with your vanity as you decide wether to risk pimples by not washing your face or dying from dehydration the next day.

5. BE OPEN FOR LEARNING EXPERIENCES AND LIFE LESSONS - these are just some of the things I have picked up:
"HARDCORE" - mountaneering fanatics (mostly all female) who climb mountains for fun during their spare time and prefer sleeping on tents hundreds of meters above sea level;
"YESTERDAY" - gay lingo for "yes, positive, affirmative" (thanks to Abet for this one);
"Male chromosomes last only up to 3 days" & some other lessons on how to concieve relayed by Nurse Tim as we descend from the summit;
"SEPIA, SHADOW, WHITE BALANCE, PORTRAITURE" & other technical terms from photographers that can sure turn me into a pseudo-expert if I use it on others;
"ELEMENTAL/SPIRITUAL" - if you want to freak out first time climbers, be sure to let them hear these terms with hair-raising stories on ghosts and other supernatural beings. You tell these stories on the summit, at midnight and be sure to create shadows and little weird noises outside their tents to complete the effect. And don't forget to mention the true story of a female climber who died a few years back.
"ASSAULT" - not to be used in a violent, threatening way or connected to bodily harm. It means to climb a particular steep part of the mountain, usually nearing the summit.

Overall, my weekend experience with this group of photgraphers/clmbers have made me realize a different kind of fun... An activity that although would leave you cursing at times and your muscles sore, would teach you basic lessons about life, nature, adventure, creativity and pursuing your passions.

And just like what they say in a Mastercard commercial:
Climbing the Mountain: hard
View from the summit: ok
The entire weekend experience: PRICELESS...
Pero di na ko uulit....


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