Wednesday, August 4, 2010

NIKO (sort-of) Survivor

Four days. 20 miles. Full back-packs. Steep trails. Limited food. Hard ground. Cold nights on the hard ground. A recurring midnight stampede of mice attempting to find warmth in our sleeping bags. While we were in them. Blisters. Burrs. Heat exhaustion.

"How can it possibly be uphill both ways?!?"

"No freakin' idea. But look, somehow, it is!"

Part of the NIKO experience in YWAM is dealing with the unexpected. Learning how to function in teams -- even in adversity. Choosing to serve the other at the expense of ourselves. To be challenged and stretched. To give and receive help. At times to be strong for others, and at other times, letting others serve you when you are weak.

It's probably best compared to Survivor -- except nobody gets voted off the island, and there are no commercial breaks. (And no treachery either, come to think of it.)

Day four. Slogging up to where we left the YWAM vans, tossing our dirty gear in. Dragging our dirty and tired bodies into the vehicles for the 100km trip home to Tijuana. Giddy. Singing silly songs. Wistful longing for imminent showers and "real" beds.

Later, during our debrief at St. Arbucks in Playas de Tijuana (where else?), showered, in clean clothes, "normal" meal at the YWAM base recently consumed, it hits us:
We did it! We really did it!

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