September 13, 2010
Earlier this season we had a blast taking several of our friends over at Outdoor Research up Mt. Rainier. Below is a peak into their experience. Enjoy!
Confessions of a Glutton
By Teresa Bruffey of Outdoor Research
“Do you have any extra room in your pack?,” my roommate asked in a breathless voice punctuated with a bit of urgency – it was late after all on the night before my departure. “Do you have just a little bit of room?”
Well, sure. I’m a pretty efficient packer. So, “yes”, I replied as I skimmed my packing list for last minute essentials that I may have forgotten at this late stage of prep.
“I have a blessing for you…” My sweet friend had carried a wish back with her from Nepal, a trip she took last fall before I was lucky enough to meet her. My blessing, carried so far, is so simple and beautiful; a few pieces of rice wrapped in paper and carefully closed with bright colorful thread. To be honest, I dont know if there is meaning to the colors of thread or the way it’s wrapped. I dont know if the paper holds special significance. I’m not even sure, really if there is actually rice in there since I can’t quite feel it through all the paper.
I could, however, read the words of the prayer written by Lama Geshe from Pangpoche:
“Give up all intention to harm others from your heart,
And do your best to benefit them all,
If each and everyone feels the universal responsibility to do so,
We will all enjoy the feast of peace.”
Hmm. I also knew the love that carried the blessing from my friend’s hands to mine, and that carefully watched this blessing be placed in a special spot in my pack. From one climber to another were passed the hopes for safe travel, for success, and most of all, for an amazing experience to mark a significant moment in life. Sara’s small gesture was a nugget of strength that helped me climb to over 14,400′ this past July. (little did she know, those 10 months ago in Nepal, that this little package would be so important to an then-unknown girl on a glacier, high in the sky – I love unexpected connections like this.)
Two days later, as I made my way with my team and our amazing guides from International Mountain Guides, from Paradise to Muir, we passed a number of groups enjoying the bluebird day and the views the mountain had to share. One family made a big deal of moving to the side – “look, climbers!!” I almost felt like a celebrity -*blush, blush* – and a little pride glowing at my hope to summit. As we passed, the father asked, “how far will you go?” “To the top!” one of my teammates replied.