Monday Mountain Climbing


Monday Mountain Climbing by Toh HL

The last time I climbed Gunong Datuk was in 2016. It was part of my training to Climb Mt Kinabalu and Gunong Rinjani in Lombok. It's already 2021. We can't help but lament how time flies.

I could climb this mountain in about 1 hr 15 min in the past. It took me 1 hour 45 minutes this morning. Sigh... growing old already! 

The summit still presents a marvellous view of the surroundings. But it was hazy while we were up there. We were glad to see they have improved the ladder system to the top of these huge rocks. The flimsy aluminium ladders were replaced by solid stainless steel steps and platforms.

The hikers still consist of youngsters. One group were surprised to see me going up over rocks and roots. They cheered me on like a celebrity. Perhaps they were hinting that I was performing above expectation. I hope so.

The fauna and flora are the same as in the past. I saw a bunch of flowers growing from the trunk of a tree. The birds and insects were just as noisy as in the days of yesteryears. The monkeys are forever sending out their mating calls. Wish them luck.

Anna was posing like a supermodel at the summit. We teased her and took a few shots. Swarms of bees at the summit were surrounding us, as if we were bee hives. We had no idea if it was our sweat or farts that attracted these insects. 

Sophie was so bothered she quitted the summit almost immediately. In fact, she was stung by one bee. She managed to pull out the sting, but was screaming in pain. Charlie was playing the role of a doctor and a pharmacist, helping her to soothe her pain. I was stung by a bee, too, but Charlie only gave me a small fraction of the attention delivered earlier. 

Ha ha. Men are men! (Written in jest. No offence meant.)

by Toh HL, co-author and photographer

Published by Chen Song Ping @ TPTan

Chen S.P. enjoys pottery works, cartoons, painting and poems. She shares insightful experiences about being a carer for people with mental illness and cancer.

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