Bill and I were taking our 3x weekly morning walk. Off to our left is a giant dirt hill that was manmade during the upgrading of the road we live on. It has been a couple of years since the road was finished, and the dirt hill has scrub brush and weeds covering most of it now. Bill casually said he bet I couldn't climb that hill. Now, it's probably 200 feet tall, and from where we were standing is fairly straight up. I told him I could do it if I wanted to, and we kept walking. On the way back, he challenged me to climb it again.
Too caught up in the challenge I never stopped to consider his motives:
1. He didn't think I'd try to climb it, and by default, would be the "fit" one
without even having to climb it himself.
2. He would climb it, have to help me, therefore voiding my actual
climbing effort, would be considered the "fit" one and forever hold
it over me that he had to drag me up the hill.
3. My life insurance is getting ready to expire and he's in danger of getting
no return on his 2 decades worth of investments.
He climbed first, and when he was halfway up, I started. It doesn't look like it from the pic, but the hill was really steep. At one point, I couldn't see the top, but looking behind me, I knew I would fall if I tried to go back down. Bill made it to the top, and then, infuriatingly came back down to stand behind me. He said it was to break my fall, but if I fell, I'd have rolled like a boulder going downhill, and he'd have been in the path. That never bodes well for climbers.
He reminded me of a golden retriever, going all around me, while I was, by then, on my hands and knees, literally clawing my way up this hill with traffic slowing down behind me to snap pics with their camera phones. He kept saying if he helped me, it wouldn't count, so I think the motive was really number 3.....just saying......
To the left of the road at the highest point, is where we started the climb/crawl.
I made it to the top, all by myself, with some skin still left on my knees. If you look over my shoulders, you can see how high up we are from the road. If I could do this by myself, what else might I accomplish?
On the flipside of that thought is this: I'm not a daredevil by any means. How dumb was it to make that climb. If I'd have started rolling backwards, I could have been in the next county before the momentum stopped.
No more climbing without the proper harness restraints in place. I'm not a 10 year old anymore....neither is Bill, but he sure went up and down the hill like a billy goat.