Rock Climbing at Blue Mountains, Australia

The Blue Mountains is an amazing place.  We stayed at a YHA youth hostel which was a beautifully restored building that used to host ballroom dancing in the 1920s.  We spent our first day figuring out the logics of camping and climbing and realized that in order to get to the climbing, we needed some form of personal transportation vehicle.  So as we were walking back, I noticed a motorcycle on the other side of the street.  I went over and saw it had a “for sale” sign on it.  I took a photo of the telephone number and asked the youth hostel if I could use their phone to call someone local.  I called up the person and said I was interested in the bike.  He said he was five minutes away and showed up within ten.  I immediately told him that I wasn’t interested in purchasing the bike but renting it for a week.  I told him that I race motorcycles and have had a motorcycle license for over 18 years and have owned just as many.  I told him I would give him $200 AUD (Aussie Dollar) for five days as well as my passport, my credit card, my race license, and $900 US dollars in cash as a deposit.  The bike was a 2009 CF Moto 125cc motorcycle and he was only asking $1200 for it, so I figured $200 AUD plus $900 USD would just about cover the bike if I decide to never return it.  I told him my logic and just as I thought he was going to say no, he said, “Ok.”  So we ended up going to a few different climbing areas which was about 15mins drive away from each other.  On the first day of climbing, the most epic part of the day wasn’t the rock climbing, it was riding to and from the climbing area.  It was raining so hard and I was so wet and so very cold on the motorcycle.  In addition, the front brakes were really really bad.  The worst part of riding in the heavy rain was actually the fogging of my windshield, even slightly cracked open for ventilation.  Half way through the ride, I thought if I fully open the windsheild it would be better, but then my glasses fogged heavily.  Then I thought, if I took off my glasses, I wouldn’t be able to ready any signs and everything would be blurry, but I would still be able to see better.  Once the glasses came off, the rain felt like a bunch of needles poking me in my eyeball and my eyeball was a pincusion for the pelting needles.

The day after our first day of climbing, I was starting to feel strong again.  In the morning, I was cleaning a small french press and it was just undersized for the girth of my palm.  I pressed in deeply to clean this dirty little french press when it broke in a bunch of pieces in my hands.  I immediately saw red.  It had gouged deep into the side of hand and blood was everywhere.  I was staring at it when all the sudden I had a wave of dizzyness overwhelm me.  I quickly sat down and almost blacked out but then almost threw up.  I realized that I got queezy from all that blood.  I never thought it would happen to me.

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