I am an emotional dishrag.
I gave a talk this week, at the Appalachian Mountain Club in Boston, about my hike across Scotland last year in the TGO Challenge. The talk went great. I had an audience of 60 people and they had to kick us out of the auditorium afterward because so many people wanted to stay and talk to me.
But writing the talk and picking through my trip photos brought back an incredible surge of memories and emotions. I’d spent over a year planning and preparing for that trip: I completely changed my gear list which involved a huge amount of gear trials and testing, I learned all about the local vegetation, geology and climate(s) of Scotland, taught myself the OS grid coordinate and mapping system used in the UK, and all kinds of other skills.
That preparation was essential but it paled when compared to the actual experience. I met so many interesting people, many who I still am in contact with, and I experienced such joy and contentment during the hike itself. It was an amazing experience and became a turning point in my life.
I know I felt this way last year too, but I am still surprised at how powerful my emotions have been this week. I don’t think I’ve ever felt this strongly about a past hike before, and it makes me wonder why that journey had such an impact on me.
Have you ever experienced anything like this?