Day 32 – Nuojla


A word used often…

A word used too much…

A word that should be replaced with the phrase ‘I would like to say no for reasons of my own, including that I lack the confidence of conviction to follow through on what see achieved by others and wish I could also achieve’

I may, in my words, be seen as someone with no tolerance, but they refer to no other but myself.

Maybe tomorrow I will take a step towards her…

Tomorrow arrived.  The weather unsettled.  The temperature low.  The wind strong and bracing.  I left, step by step, to have my fill and there she stood.  Looking down from afar.  I avert my gaze, looking at the ground below, avoiding her challenge.

A walk along, collect food.  Good that is a luxury that I least expected, and I sit.  My mind floats.  I am not present as I eat, but ponder…

Today I should move.  Today I should take those first steps.  Stand feet to feet, and then after breath, motion and sweat, sit allowing her touch upon my skin, her cool breath brush upon my face and the noises around us to become the sound track of a moment to be remembered.

I check my route…  It would seem bashful to have no plan of approach, no route to her summit.  If I am to commune with her during this time of purgatory, I should at least appear to be committed to the cause.

It began, easy at first, then an increase in pace, then the syncopations of breath, heart beat and movement.  Heart rate increasing, the sound filling my ears.  My breathing deep, and along with the sound of footsteps, playing a percussive rhythm that is idler than man, order than any living organisms, providing the tempo, the beat to the music that she provides.

At first it feels easy and light, then the route changes, the pleasure is accompanied by a familiar but if as muscles and lungs push to provide the power needed to reach her.  I give more than I would normally.  I have come nothing more than what I wear.  No water, for I shall drink her rives and streams, having my fill of her crystal clear liquids.  I will eat only if I begin to flatter, have my fill of her berries, coating her skin like million blue freckles.

She is yellow, she is orange, she is soft and she is hard.  A waterfall, cascading, gouging the very rock is the first obstacle,  whilst above, out of sight, I hear the wind brushing past her face.  I climb, my feet finding purchase, my hands crimping the tiniest of ridges and the obstacle is no more.  I run.  I run uphill.  I grin.  A devilish grin as I have no burden upon my back and despite the burning, my legs feel ought and my heart is as it should be.  Content to be as it is and nothing more than it is.

A plateau and the chance of rest.  I regain control.  ‘You being a joy to running, but you should learn to hold back a little’ 

I hear the wise words of Raj after he completed his BGR, a moment I feel privileged to have been part of and witnessed.  I hold back, there is a short distance left but it will take effort to complete.

I see no one ahead, no one behind and I realise I am now alone with her.  I push.  She is worth the sacrifice as she will either fill me with confidence or teach me the humility I need.  Slowly, she appears. A collection of rocks.  A row of flags blowing in the wind.  I am truly closer to the stars than I have ever been whilst standing on the Earth and having used my own body to reach.

I smile.  A smile filled with a joy both subtle and euphoric.  I screen, howl and laugh, as she sit at my feet.  It is time to sit.  Time to enjoy her touch.  To cement this moment in memory, without any adventurous bravado, but as it is.  A fragile and ephemeral existence sitting side by side with a beauty that measured in the lives of men is eternal.  I enjoy her views, at peace, her touch on my skin, her breath cold but comforting on my face.  I stand, like a shadow I leave, no trace of my passing, and begin the long paths down from her.

Euphoric yet content.  Each foot step purposeful and appreciated for what it is. A brief pause here, another later. Each time staring at the landscape.  My legs are tired.  They have the familiar warmth of muscles pushed just far enough.  She deserves this and more for the peace that she provides all who visit her, all who look upon her beautifully timeless face and all she graces with those glimpses of pure unadulterated pleasure.  Already so am fresh for more.  Greedy to explore her rocky skin, her gorges and woodlands, her wintery scapes and the promise of experiences lacking in the touches of human civilisation. 

All because I have filled an empty heart with all that I could see touch and smell.

Now I sit, back in purgatory, her scent still upon me, letting her touch and the sensation of being atop her fill my memory.  My love, the mountain.


One thought on “Day 32 – Nuojla

  1. Hi Aleks,

    Thanks for our shared time in Abisko, you have been an inspiration. Sitting in the train brought me back to my own little trip, but also to the question of why. Why pushing my own boundaries, why seeking the hardship, what is a comfort zone anyway? Your encounter with Nuojla does point to some direction, just as your own motivation, pushing it to the utter extreme though.


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