Most Sundays I find myself taking a trip to the church in my town with my home stay mom which should be a post in itself, but not this Sunday. Peace Corps arragned for a little leisure time for us by booking a trip to a place called Boti Falls. I saw it on the schedule and figured that it would be a nice little trip, maybe see some water falling vertically and such. That seemed like a good thing.
Off I went. The really nice thing about this Sunday was that I got to actually hang out with the other half of our group. Again, we are about 72 volunteers now (sadly, one had to terminate early due to life circumstances. The shorthand for this is ET - early termination) but due to our different tracks, we are split almost down the middle for training purposes. This field trip though brought most of us back together for a day which means a lot more fun for me.
So off we went to see the falls. I dressed buisness casual again for no reason at all save for the fact that I am getting used to button down shirts and trousers. Oh, and they are trousers here, not pants. The term pants is used for your underpants. Knickers? those are shorts. Got that? Great. Back on to the story. I am ready for a leisurely stroll which ensues and we get to see the falls after descending 200 or so steps to the base of a cliff. Sadly, this area has not seen a great deal of rainfall in the last few days so the falls were more trickles instead. One could imagine how impressive these would be though had there been a lot of water gushing over the edge. Instead our group witnessed a leaky faucet on two sides of the overhang. I have video and pictures of this, but they will be saved for a later upload.
Now we have gotten through the falls. What is next? Lunch. And then a hike.
I like hikes, sure, I'll go.
At points this felt less like a nature walk than an ascent up K2 provided K2 was in a jungle. The rise and fall of the trail had extremely sharp changes and while all of us made it unscathed, there were quite a few times where we could have had some really bad tumbles had we lost our footing. But the end,... it was worth it by any measure.
We climbed and climbed up to the highlight of the trip. The Umbrella rock was a giant boulder standing on top of a column of stone. The last 400 or more yards of the walk was straight up to this rock and me and about four others got there first to enjoy the view. For fifty pesewas (about 30 cents back home) you could climb a ladder that the locals set up for us tourists. From there the view of the valley was terrific. The look over the edge was petrifying. I'd say it was an easy 100 feet down if you fell off the top of this. No guardrails, no ropes to keep you safe, just you and a giant rock to walk on top of. Pretty neat, yes?
After cooling off in the cool breeze we then proceeded to move back to our transport buses and get moving back to Kukurantumi. I am glad that I got a chance to do this and am thankful that the Peace Corps allowed us to go. Next time though, I will pay more attention to what we are doing and dress accordingly. It is too warm to look good at times here.