I just had to share this adverture. arrmaitee and I are doing a holiday in Australia and New Zealand (Arrmaitee is here for four weeks, and I'm here for almost three months). We just arrived in Sydney, Australia on Wednesday, and we were advised multiple times that we HAD to go see the Blue Mountains. Well, I thought that a good sightseeing tour would suffice, but Arrmaitee HAD to do the three hour hike into the Grand Canyon. So we booked a tour for Friday.
Well, Friday rolls along and it is pouring rain (I mean POURING rain), but we decided to go hiking anyway. After all, it is an adventure, right? We take this chartered bus to the Blue Moutains with a bitchy British woman and a Cirque Du Soleil escapee. Arrmaitee and the British woman get into a fight over Arrmaitee hiking with his Burberry umbrella. Of course, the more she insists that he can't hike with it, the more he insists that he can't hike without it!
Then we started the hike. The beginning of the hike was deceptively easy. It was flat. Too flat. Way too flat. Deceptively flat. So Arrmaitee and I didn't worry too much that it was pouring rain. What's a torrential downpour, anyway? Of course, then we arrived at the cliff... I mean stairs.
The bloody hike was into the Blue Mountain rainforest, only there was gushing water all over the steps and we needed to climb down well over 1000 feet to get to the main part of the trail. That's when poor Arrmaitee discovered that I have this weird, unexplainable phobia about walking down slippery surfaces. Poor Arrmaitee!
So, Arrmaitee ended up hiking backward (with his umbrella) trying to get me down the mountain. I kept falling flat on my ass in the rain. But I managed to make it down the mountain in the pouring rain. Quite the accomplishment, I thought.
But wait, there's more. After a few thousand wet stairs, about 20 slip and fall incidents and a few hundred waterfalls running across the hiking trail, we find out that we have to cross a flowing river.
At this point I was begging to be voted off the Island, and Arrmaitee wasn't doing too much better. After all, did we REALLY want to walk across a flowing river? But we crossed it anyway and then found out that there were two more freezing cold rivers for us to cross (and we do mean cross by going into three feet of rapidly flowing water).
Well, after river three, the tour guide informs us that river four is uncrossable, so we have to go back! What the fuck?!!! Arrmaitee and I literally just started laughing. I mean... we were 80% through with the bloody hike! And now we had to go BACK through the rivers wild, and back up all those bloody stairs in the rain with me gasping for breath and Arrmaitee freezing his ass off.
So what good came of this? Well, the British woman who argued with Arrmaitee tumbled into a river, I got to face my fears, neither Arrmaitee and I got pneumonia, and... er... the Blue Mountains were exquisitely beautiful. While it was interesting seeing a rainforest in the rain, I think next time I'll just stay in bed.
Oh, and our "three hour hike" actually ended up taking close to six hours. Bloody hell!
So now Arrmaitee and I are on to new adventures...