Nepal has been high on my list of places to go for, well, as long as I have been making a list of places I want to go. It has been on my list for one reason and one reason only: trekking in the Himalayan Mountain Range.
I get flutters in my stomach when I start talking about everything I want to do while in Nepal. The thought of hiking in the largest mountains in the world gets my blood pumping in a way that no other place in the world probably can. It makes me excited, giddy even.
Why I am so excited to be in the mountains? I am someone who has always been at peace in nature, but particularly so in the mountains. Give me a rock to sit on and a mountain view and I will want to spend the entire day there, doing nothing but enjoying where I am. When surrounded by mountains, there is a calming of my soul that I experience nowhere else.
I am excited for the calmness. I am excited for the contentment. I am excited to find a rock, sit down, and just be in the mountains.
But for now, I can only anticipate being in the mountains. I try to keep myself busy, but I find myself continually pulling out my map, tracing our routes with my finger and dreaming of the views as I count down the days. But like a kid in the weeks before Christmas, the anticipation makes the days seem to drag on.
Being in Nepal brings a clichéd but apropos quote by John Muir (a man far more eloquent than I can ever hope to be) to mind:
“The mountains are calling, and I must go.”
I don’t know if I have ever read a quote that I have identified with more than this one. The mountains have a pull on my soul that nothing else has. It isn’t just that I like or want to be in the mountains, it is more than just my ‘happy place’. For me, the mountains are a need. The mountains are where I go to be recharged, to get centered, where I belong.
Even as I sit here and write this, there is a swelling on my chest that is building – the anticipation – knowing that I am surrounded by the mountains that pull me towards them. Soon, I will go.