Sunday, 4 March 2018


The perfect view from above, High Tatra Mountains

Tuesday 28th July 2015 

“I need water.” I mumbled, somehow. Jack was panicking and I was convinced that I was going to die, growing thirstier and thirstier by the second. As I still continued to be sick, throwing up the last of my liquids, I was getting irritable and shaky. I didn’t want to walk any longer through this greenish desert but I needed water. We had to keep walking. It was getting darker and we had no other way of getting out of this. Jack stormed on ahead, determined to find a solution and eventually, he came across a mini stream flowing beneath the cracks of the rocky path, the water trickled inside our water bottles. 

As I lay there sprawled out on the floor, not bothered if a bear came and mauled me to death, Jack came to my rescue. The water tasted just like soil, yummy. I didn’t care. The earthy taste and tiny bits of gravel just blended in with my tasteless gratitude and nonchalant attitude. Jack was motivating me down that path like a soldier but just when I thought that it couldn’t get any worse, my sickness took a brief break of coming out of one way and decided to come out of another… Brilliant. I used fixed branches as a seat and leaves as paper and to be honest, I actually quite enjoyed it. I felt pleasantly unrestricted and free, like a wild animal.

High Tatra Valleys

We eventually came to a restaurant hut, hooray. Jack filled up the water bottles and grabbed himself a beer. Time was getting on and we still had at least forty minutes left until the bottom.
As those minutes grew longer and longer, my body ready to collapse, I started to hear familiar sounds, and people. A carpark, a road. God damn I was so bloody happy. We had made it, again. I couldn’t wait to get on that bus, get back to the hostel and sleep for the rest of my life.

It was 7:00pm when the bus arrived, I was hot and sweaty and there was nowhere to sit down. I felt so irritable and was in need of a chair ASAP because I knew exactly what was coming. As more and more locals got on and off, I hadn’t even noticed that there was an empty seat near to me. I think the people around could see how shit and pale I looked, eyes half closed, flapping about from side to side, my last bit of strength clutching the pole, that they knew I needed that seat more than them. A woman tapped me on the shoulder and gestured me to sit down. She smiled at me apprehensively, as I mimed the words, “Thank you,” but her smile quickly vanished when I began aggressively throwing up into a plastic bag. When I came out for air, everyone was staring at me and thank god, Jack was now sitting next to me, rubbing my back and comforting me, my knight in shining armour. 

The longest walk of my life, High Tatra Mountains

When we arrived back in Zdiar, I rushed back to the hostel, as if my body had been saving up this last bit of energy for the final journey. I pathetically waved to guests sitting on the terrace, mumbling some kind of polite greeting, trying to act normal, as I stumbled inside and straight up to the staff room. I lay on my bed with the same appreciation that I had had this morning and fell straight to sleep. It was ‘Italian night’ in the hostel and although, I absolutely adored all things Italian, especially the food, it was the very last thing on my mind. 

I continued to dart to the bathroom throughout the night, my sporadic belching keeping the entire hostel awake. And although, I was still feeling crappy, that same content feeling that I had had this morning still lingered within. As I wiped away the last of the acidic slime and got back into bed, Jack asking how I was, I knew that I could finally open my mouth again without being sick. I uttered the words, “Fuck you Jeff.” Smiled and fell asleep.

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