The weekend of September 13-15, Marissa and I decided to stay in Gaming rather than travel because we had 4 tests and 3 summaries due the next week. It was so nice to be on campus and have only a few other people around. It was so quiet and we really got to know the other people who stayed behind.
On Friday, after studying all morning, we asked Matt Peter if he would take us hiking. We wanted to do Book Mountain, but he wanted to do the Russian Hut, so we ended up going to the Russian Hut. Marissa, Matt, Ryan and I headed out around 2pm and walked down the road to the mountain. Matt has already hiked book mountain twice, been to the caves at least twice and had tried to find the Russian hut before without a map. So he’s leading the way up the trail and he decides to take a short cut and just run up the side of the mountain to the next path rather than walk down the path about 30 yards to where it curved up to get us to the same spot. So we ran up the side of the mountain and I was all out of breath by the time we were on the trail again. Matt just keeps marching on ahead totally unfazed. So we’re hiking, and hiking, and hiking and I’m pretty sure I’m about to die, when all of a sudden I got a leg cramp. We all had to stop until the cramp let up and then Matt continues running (not really though) on ahead. We passed all these little grottos where the stations of the cross were painted and some of the mysteries of the rosary.
We got to a level part of the mountain and then I got a foot cramp. It was awful. But we kept plowing on ahead following the sketch the RA had drawn for Matt. As we were going along, Ryan decided to wander down this little path to see where it lead and he stumbled across the Russian Hut. The guys were expecting this great hut that they were eventually planning on camping in and apparently ten guys can fit in. It was this little fort that ten guys can maybe fit in if they’re standing up sandwiched together. Not only that, the hut looks like it’s on sticks and the ladder to get up to it had a few broken sticks (aka rungs). It’s also on the side of a cliff bolted to a tree.
Matt of course climbed up it and Ryan followed him up. The whole thing was swaying a little bit so Marissa and I were decided that there was absolutely no way we were going up there. But after the guys came down, we went up anyways. I went up first and it was swaying a little bit. Then I got to the top and looked down while Marissa was coming up (and shaking the whole thing, unintentionally, in the process) and remembered how scared I was of heights. When she got up, Matt took our picture and then she climbed down first. All the way down she kept commenting on how scary it was to go down but when I went down, it wasn’t scary at all.
We decided to head back down the mountain because it was sprinkling and all the way down for a full hour, Ryan recounted all his expeditions with his cousins in high school. When we got back to campus, it was about 4:30 and we came in washed all our stuff because it was kinda muddy.
The next morning at breakfast, I was talking with a few girls about where they had travelled and when they asked us what we did, I told them we went hiking. They asked us how it was and I was like, “It was great except Matt was going so fast I thought I was gonna die. But don’t tell him I said that.” It turns out that Matt was standing at the counter behind me so he overheard it. Shannon said that he was totally cool with it because she ran into him later in the day and he was telling her about it.
On Saturday we did home work all day and then walked into town in the afternoon to get dessert at the local café. I had this dessert that was two layers of chocolate cake with banana cream in the middle and a half a banana on top. The whole thing was covered with dark chocolate and it was pretty good although I wouldn’t eat it again. Marissa stopped at Spar and got gelato and when we got in line to check out, these two ladies chattered to us in German and motioned for us to go ahead of them because they each had a full car of groceries. It was so sweet of them! On our way back, these two old ladies stopped us and asked us something in German. I must have looked so confused so I told them “I don’t understand,” and they lit up and were like, “you speak English!?” It turns out they were looking for a bakery or café so I gave them directions on how to get there. It was my first encounter with someone speaking German to me and it was actually quite fun!
We spend Sunday doing home work all day and catching up with other people on their weekend excursions. It was definitely worth it to stay behind in Gaming for a weekend because it was relaxing and a lot of fun.