Image by kool_skatkat via FlickrLast night I was watching some PBS show about these mountain ranges. Don't ask me which ones, cause I honestly don't remember. The only reason that I brought it up is because they show these views from the mountain tops, and OK, I get that they're supposed to be beautiful and breath taking. But for me, they're just butt-puckering.
But wait, there's more to this story besides my involuntary Buns of Steel exercises. I have, for as long as I can remember, wanted to go to Machu Picchu.
Whenever they do a special on that place I get all intrigued and wished I had an up to date passport and a boatload of money for a plane ticket. Even the name just calls to me. Machu Picchu. I want to walk through the main square and marvel at the views from the Temple of the Sun and the see the residential area and climb the walls of the terraced area that scientific-type people think is where they grew their produce. Here'e the WTF thing though...
I hate heights.
And when I say hate, I mean like some people loose their limbs to frostbite from climbing Mt Everest, whereas I'd freely give my limb if that's what it would take to ensure that I'd never ever ever have to climb Everest.
And Machu Picchu is WAAAAAYYYY the fuck up there. In fact, that's why I chose the picture at the beginning of the post, so you could see by comparison the mountain PEAKS all around the site. Airplanes with tourists land below Machu Picchu. And the place is filled with incredibly steep stairs. I hate steep stairs almost as much as I hate heights!
Then there's the added part of me having a massive quasi-illogical fear of South America. It's illogical because as a free North American citizen, I don't have to travel to South America if I don't want to. It's logical in that blond-headed-blue-eyed people such as myself have a tendency to get kidnapped in South America so the natives can ransom us for ape-loads of money.
And yet, I still want to go to Machu Picchu whenever I hear that Bill Curtis voice over and see that incredible site. I forget that I detest heights and struggling to breathe in high altitude atmospheres let alone trying to climb and be all physical-endurance in that environment since I consider vacuuming the height of my weekly exercise. Even as Bill tells me that tourists are told to stay at a base town some ways down the mountain below Machu Picchu for up to a week before visiting the site itself so that they can get used to the thin air and not get full blown altitude sickness, I get all glassy-eyed in anticipation of going. I'm even sitting on my nice comfy couch thinking, that a misstep would kill you cause you could just keep rolling and tumbling, limbs all akimbo to your death as your screams echo off all of those Peruvian mountains.
But still I want to go. Not in that 'call the airlines' way, but in the Romeo misses Juliet longing like it's a lost lover way. I'm even being deliberately redundant so you know how strong AND how psycho the whole thing is.
Which means that reincarnation is totally real and I am a past life Inca trying to go home... or I'm completely loop-de-friggin'-mentally-ill-loo.
Personally, I've got twenty bucks on the mental illness angle.