New Year Mountain

Yesterday, I climbed to the top of Piestewa Peak aka Squaw Peak aka the Phoenix Mountains. After the last of my family had gone, after I had dropped my grandpa off at the airport, after he asked me if I could see and acknowledge the strengths in myself, after I said “depends on the day” – I decided to climb a giant mountain in the middle of the valley.
I had no idea what this hike really entailed. My parents had done in the previous day on their own and they made it sound very urban and moderate. I figured from the amount of people in the parking lot, the tiny colored dots I could see zig-zagging up the rocky side that it wouldn’t bee too difficult. What I didn’t notice were the tiny minuscule dots waaaaay at the tippy top that you couldn’t see until you were half way up the peak.
Yesterday, was a day I acknowledge my strengths. I climbed the steps to Mordor (I’m not kidding, that’s what they felt like. Steep, numerous, unending) and when I got to the top the view was astounding. 360 degrees – north, south, east, west – it was all laid out in front of me. I could see the Superstition mountains, the South Mountains, McDowell, Camelback – I thought I saw snow. I thought I saw Flagstaff. I looked South again at the city, traced my eyes north west a bit and knew Pat was somewhere among the trees. Home.
It’s so strange when the year changes. It’s a mirror, but also something transparent. Reflection and straining to see what’s ahead. “What do you think will happen to us this year,” Pat said. And really, no one has any idea. Isn’t that crazy! When we look back on all the things that have happened in the past year, how can we possibly be ready for what’s ahead? And maybe if we did know, we wouldn’t walk into it to willingly. But things happen – amazing, shitty, awful, wonderful things happen. Damn, what a view.

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