With a sinus infection. Or the remnants of one. It f*cking hurts your head until you feel your eyes are going to be crushed by the pressure mounting in your forehead and cheekbones and finally you have to admit that yes, the mountain has defeated me.
And so it goes.
This past weekend I traveled to Mt. Moosilauke near lovely Warren, New Hampshire. (Hey! I know Warren!) Some friends and I rented Great Bear Cabin, a cabin owned and maintained by the Dartmouth Outing Club, of which I am a lifetime member in spite of my decided lack of sportiness. My sportiness comes in the form of yoga and tennis (because I think it helps to have a dress code), neither of which involves dirt. Camping and hiking involve lots and lots of dirt, so this was my first mountain trek in quite some time.
I arrived after midnight from New York City, where two lovely friends had rented an SUV to whisk us northward. It worked. We got to the cabin in a reasonable amount of time, and were informed, after a dark, dark hike up 1/3 mile of trail, that there were no pork tacos.
It's the kind of statement you think will not affect you, until it happens. You didn't even know pork tacos were a possibility, but upon hearing you can't have one, sadness sets in. (Don't think of a white elephant).
I jest. There were no pork tacos, but it didn't crush my spirits. The team assembled in its entirety sometime near 2 a.m. and we turned in for the night to get adequately rested for some hiking.
After a breakfast of: scrambled eggs with fresh herbs, johnny cakes, which are pancakes with corn, not flour, and lots and lots of Schaller and Webber bacon, we set out on our varied hikes. Five folks went up the more difficult trail to the summit of Mt. Moosilauke. Three of us drove to the Ravine Lodge at the base. One decided it was a good day to chill at said lodge, and I should have stayed with him. Up up up I went, only to wind up with crushing head pain, no tissues and a trip back down, down, down without having seen the expansive vistas that should have awaited me.
Back at the cabin that evening we drank ourselves out of wine, played a game with dice called Mentirosa which I think is my new favorite thing (it involves lying. it's awesome.) and then trundled in my bunk after eating delicious sausages.
Mad props to my chef for the weekend, and kudos to my companions for providing me with a fine woodland retreat that wasn't too dirty. Although next time I might lobby for canoing.