Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Give the Andes a Chance

During our weekend excursion to Maras, we hiked to the nearby town of Moray. It was about an hour and a half long hike (according to our guide, I wasn’t keeping track). During the walk, we all broke out our headphones and started listening to our various playlists, occasionally talking to each other or pausing to take photos. I was listening to Chance the Rapper, for the 378th time since he released Coloring Book on May 12th. I’m obsessed with it. Ob. Sessed. (I listened to it on the flight from Lima to Cusco, and I cried. That’s how good it is.)
Unlike literally everyone else in our group, I am not even close to being in shape. At all. (I don’t know why I chose this trip, tbh). Just to give you an idea, our Peru crew is comprised of the mountaineer Shapiro, the adventurous sorority girls, and everyone else who either played sports in high school or is just really outdoorsy.

So anyway, here’s fat little me, about to go on this hour and half long hike. It’s cool; everything is good. I’m just blasting Chance in my headphones looking at these incredible views. His album has several gospel-themed songs, so looking at the views with his music in the background really made me marvel at God’s handiwork.  This was Profe’s first year doing this hike, so none of us knew what to expect. Thankfully, it was pretty easy and straightforward – not too rocky or uneven. Then there was this hill. It seemed like it just kept going and going, but I just kept listening to Chance and climbed up it anyway. (I did make a few unhappy snapchats: “Climb the mountain, they said. It’ll be fun, they said” with some pretty lively emojis.) I was at the back, with Profe and Alejandra, and the rest of the group was so far ahead, I couldn’t even see them. Our guide had decided to wait for us, I guess, because after we climbed the hill, he was standing alone with his dog.

He comes up to me, pink-faced and out of breath, and asks if I’m okay. Then he asks me what I’m listening to. I was kinda confused as to why he would care and what he would know about our music anyway, but I answered “Hip hop”. He smiled and nodded enthusiastically and asked if he could listen too. I hand him one of the headphones, and we walk to meet the rest of the group, just jamming to Chance. That’s the cool thing about music; you don’t have to understand it. You just have to feel it. In those moments walking with Amilca and imagining myself in his shoes, I understood the purpose of this trip and cross-cultural education. It’s the willingness to listen, understand, and take part in something you know nothing about that makes this Maymester and these people different from other university classes. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.