I am very late posting my entry for this week’s Photo Friday, but I have a good reason. I had company from California here for the past few days and I wanted to spend my time with her. Thanks for visiting Shawn! It was a gooooood time! 🙂 Safe travels, my friend!
And so, without any further ado…
Today’s Photo Friday is entitled: Emotion
chosen by: Julie
Follow the links below for other entries (I will add links as entries come in!):
It’s always “fun” to conquer, even if just a little bit, one’s fears, don’t you think? I am quite the acrophobe. I fear heights. Not ALL heights mind you. My fear of heights is rather specific. I’m fine with being at the top of very tall buildings, I LOVE roller coasters and other rides that include heights, and I have no problem with flying (planes of ANY size and helicopters are all just fine with me). I don’t even mind hiking upwards. What bothers me are things like being on bridges, hiking DOWN, driving next to drop offs, snow skiing, that sort of thing. I don’t like being in high places where there is, at least to me, a perceived or actual lack of control in the situation. I can’t stand having people anywhere near me if I am standing in a place where they could startle me, or end up close behind me without my having seen them come up on me. My fear is more of a fear of falling from any sort of height, even if from a small height.
I used to be able to climb trees, climb up onto roofs, and climb ladders without any problem whatsoever. I was rather fearless, in fact. But I was startled twice, once when I was 16 and once when I was in my twenties, which resulted in my developing fear. The first startling occured when I was laying concrete blocks on a less than sturdy scaffolding on the second story of a building. When I was deep in concentration and hard at work, a guy reached up from the ground and grabbed my ankles and shook me. And that was the start of it. I got so fearful of heights that I had a problem using the second step of a stepladder! I worked on desensitizing myself and was almost over my fear. But then, at the top of the Hancock center in Chicago I got my second startling. While I was deeply in thought and looking down, my brother came up behind me and shook my shoulders and gave me one of those “Bahahahahha” shouts in my ear. I again spiraled into my old fear pattern. And I’ve been working on overcoming it, or at least occasionally temporarily conquering it, since.
Yesterday my visiting friend, Shawn, and I took a hike up to some abandoned train tracks and tunnels. The hike up to the location was really more like a loose gravel scramble! Staying well ahead of Shawn (for my mental sanity) we climbed quite a distance at a very steep incline on a very slippery slope and it wasn’t until we reached the top that I thought “Gee, I just HOPE I’m going to be able to get down!”. Putting that thought aside until I HAD to deal with it, I threw myself into enjoying the view from “up there”. And I carefully picked my way around the washed out areas along the trail. With the sound of the highway and river far below us, we worked our way through each of five tunnels and enjoyed the rock formations, the plant life, the insects, the sky and the feeling of relative solitude that being far away from civilization invokes.
My emotion is “exhilaration”.
Lou and Shawn, a self-portrait in front of the entrance to one of the tunnels
I didn’t do a Rocky sort of dance when I arrived at the top, nor did I shout with glee. But inside I had this exhilarated “Whew!!! I am DOING this!” sort of response.
Shawn also has her own heights issues, so we were quite the pair. When our hike had to be over as we had a reservation for some horsebacking riding and HAD to get going, we found our way back to where we climbed up, and boy, did it look even more steep and slippery from up there. We pretty much just slid down on our backsides holding onto anything at all that would give us a sense of security! We were dusty, filthy, hot and sweaty, and our hearts were pounding when we got to the bottom, but get to the bottom we did! Yay us!!!
(I will have to conquer my fear to get back up to this location again, as there is a geocache hidden in one of those tunnels that I failed to locate this time around!)
If you fear heights/falling, you might want to (or maybe not! I could hardly watch it!) check out this link e-mailed to me by a friend, and also seen on “A Curious State of Affairs”. This gave me the biggest case of the willies I’ve had in a loooooong time! 🙂
Please visit the links to the other participants work using the links at the beginning of this post and leave them a comment!
Friday 30th May : Title by CordieB: Phantasmagoria
Next Friday’s challenge will be my last for awhile. I leave June First and won’t be home for two months! Yikes!