On Tuesday morning I woke up at a tough 5:30 am to hike to a point called “la cruz” (the cross) with my host family. Things had been a little awkward for me in their house. After moving from a different homestay I felt rushed to get to know them in only a week. I struggled to connect and was just generally overwhelmed by the situation.
My host dad, two sisters and I left the house around 5:45 that morning. The climb up was short but slightly brutal due to the intense incline and my still being half asleep. Even though by the top I was struggling to breathe (from the view and the exercise) it felt incredible to move my body again. Looking out at the glistening lake, and the town half covered in mist recovered my spirit. It’s hard to explain why but my family and I found common ground up there. My sisters and I played a game of hide and seek, my dad talked to me about the water quality of the lake, and we spent a long time staring at the view.
Walking back into town after the descent I felt revived. The warm air felt soothing rather than suffocating. The constant music energized me instead of stressing me out. I had a lovely conversation with my family at breakfast. Since that morning I have been feeling much calmer. I couldn’t figure it out at the time but what I really needed was a break. I needed to be restored by nature and that’s exactly what our hike to the cross did.