Over the holidays, I took a trip (aptly called GRRRLHOOOD) to Big Bend and Marfa with three of my very good friends, Jennifer, Mala and Clare. We were inspired by two things, 1. This playlist and 2. Boyhood the movie. I took travel notes along the way. I’ll post each day in its own separate post.
We woke up around 8-9 and went to a food trailer called Boyz2Men. The only funny thing about it was that their menu was called Boyz2Menu. Otherwise, the dudes serving food there were just irreverent and trying hard to sound sassy - but obviously reciting the same sassy script they had for ages. They suggested ordering four tacos instead of two when I asked, then said, "so half an order of four? Or half of a half order?" I got flustered because of math, so I just asked for "two physical tacos."
After breakfast, we started the long drive to Big Bend. It's beautiful out here. There are so many different shades of blue. Everything is in a gradient. My eyes are watery all the time. The air is so easy to breathe (easier, if I weren't sniffling all over the place.). Everything is pure. This land is so varied. I hope they never touch it. Just leave it be.
We drove along the scenic route and did the Santa Elena Canyon Trail. It's a fun, easy 1-hour hike. I did it last year with my parents, only when I was with them, in that state, I was so angry and sad and torn up inside. Everything had a layer of despondency. This time, I was so very elated to be with my friends. I climbed on top of very big rocks. How fun it is to climb things! The adrenaline rush, the real-time figuring things out, that extended leg pressed hard against the next rock over and praying you don't slide down.
I have such fondness for Big Bend, despite having only been here once before. I feel the mountains hugging me. I now understand why they say kings live in mountains. They press against me. They look like sleeping beasts. When I see the landscape, I remember what it was like to be here last year. Such sorrow. Now, such joy. Such contentment. Such peace in my heart.
I think I could make a tradition out of this. There's something grand about coming back to the exact same place, the exact same spot year after year, if only to check in with yourself and see where you are. There's nothing quite like gazing up the side of a canyon to ask yourself, "so, are you okay now?"