Even having taken the train in, and the buses up the switchbacks, to reach the area, I didn’t think I’d make it this far up. The air was thin and the climb was steep and I had all my belongings on my back.
I’d met Pat and Ron on the tour. He’d stayed farther down with her stuff. Like me, and about half the group, she was headed up.
She was 20+ years my senior at the time, and in vastly better shape than I was. (And yeah also she wasn’t carrying her life on her back, but the story stands: she was in vastly better shape.)
I wasn’t quite the last of our group making the climb, but I was pretty far back.
I’m not going to make it, I told her as I gasped the thin air. Go ahead, don’t miss it.
But she didn’t let me give up and go back. She encouraged me all the way, and we made it.
My photo is my proof.
Bless you Pat, I send my light and love to you, wherever you may be.