We went to a climbing gym yesterday. No pictures, sorry. I asked for some, but the truth is that the camera phones are a bit to navigate and our camera has been missing for several months. Anyway.
So last week a coworker had invited Baboo to go to the climbing gym and he accepted, as something new he'd never tried, and WAS I JEALOUS? I was.
I had been intruigued by this ever since I saw the guys trooping past the the new house on the trails with big pads strapped to their backs. For months I watched them, finally settling on the hypothesis that they were headed for some high spot in the mountains to meditate, and maybe do yoga. Never quite satisfied with that answer, since it was about 99% guy trooping by with their big giant pads, so finally I hopped the back wall and shouted to them my curiousity, and they told me they were going bouldering.
You ever do something and say to yourself, "I could do that?" Not because you're one of those "can-do" kind of people, but because you have this distant memory of yourself climbing trees until your mother, peering upwards through the branches, demands you to come down...NOW...before you kill yourself?
Anyway. So, of course, all that was 35 years ago, I was nine, and I weighed all of about 50 pounds. Yesterday was a completely different experience, and as I clung to the wall oddly worried about falling--despite the harness--I thought to myself, "Less ass is needed here, and more forearm and finger strength."
Baboo and Sweetface shouted encouragement and suggestions from below. We all took turns managing each other's rope-and-pully system. Before climbing, a staff member had given us all the tour and a brief tutorial on how to manage the belay system. I eyed the pully suspiciously--way, way up there--and imagined a cartoon-like scenerio where Baboo came flying straight down while I was lifted off my feet toward the ceiling.
But reality was way cooler, all the technology worked, and besides, the floor has about a half foot of padding on it, anyway. We wandered about, testing this wall and that, some leaning forward, some leaning backwards and some going overhead (where gravity and mass inevitably prevailed, at least for me).
Of course, I. Am. Lazy. But remember, I am also Stubborn. I will be back. I felt like I was nine again, and half expected to hear my mom yelling at me to GET DOWN FROM THERE RIGHT NOW, MISTY JANE--I AM NOT KIDDING! It was a blast, and I plan to file down my nails and go again.
If you go: forget about fingernails. Do buy some chalk. wear comfy clothes; girls tended to be more in yoga pants and t-shirts. Boys wore all sorts of stuff. Be prepared to be a bit humbled. But if you're like me, with the echo of childhood ringing in your ears, be prepared to wonder when you get to come back again.