A week without posting – it’s a long time since that happened I think, at least when I’m “at home.” The reason being a visit from my younger son, Guy.
Guy left Tenerife in 2002, so ten years already, but more about musings on empty nests and such at another time.
Right now I am sitting here editing (although little, if any, editing is needed) some photos we took yesterday on a gentle hike in the Teide National Park, and because I am a little tired tonight I thought I would share them in lieu of anything deeper.
I’ve written a couple of times recently, and several in the past, about the Teide National Park. It’s a World Heritage Site as well as a National Park, and is, basically, the enormous crater of a volcanic eruption which left El Teide, Spain’s highest mountain not only at its center, but at the center of the island too. Oh, it might not be geographically the center, but it is as if the island radiates outwards from its peak, even though this area is not the oldest part of the island. Legends abound, the landscape is described as “lunar” or “fantastic” or “surreal”, tourists are gobsmacked, hikers relish the challenges and photographers fall in love with this landscape, and here it is:
OK. This photo is just a little self-indulgent because that tha’ mountain is the one I summited in January, when I slept in a cave, which is the other side from this photo, but I couldn’t resist. This is Guajara, the stuff of legends.
And so is this.
And finally…… thanks to the miracles of modern cameras – the intrepid hikers together.
Actually, perhaps I should get serious for a moment here. Yesterday, as we were messing about with this photo, a hiker died on the neighboring island of Gran Canaria from heat exhaustion. We are experiencing dense calima, despite these blue skies in the mountains, which rise above the clag, and a heatwave of serious proportions, an Orange Alert, in fact, unusual for this time of year. What you can’t see on this photo are the bottles of water we had stashed in front of us. We intended only a short hike, and we were within an hour of the parador, but dehydration isn’t always what you think it is. It isn’t, necessarily, a raging thirst and burned lips the way you see it in the movies; simply feeling sluggish, some confusion, a headache, a dry mouth or even slight dizziness can be indicators. Yesterday we noticed several people, who seemed to be walkers, in the café of the parador drinking beers. Now, I love an ice cold beer on a hot day as much as anyone, but only if I am hydrated in the first place, otherwise, the alcohol does just the opposite – it dehydrates you – and, guys, I can promise you there is nothing manly or macho about being a beer drinker so far as the ladies see it. Needless to say, hats, or some other head covering, and suncreams are also essential items in your pack. On this morning my son had done a two hour run, we passed several walkers who had clearly done the entire four-hour walk, and we spied, from a distance a party of young guys having fun doing some rock climbing. One thing I know for sure is that they all made sure they made provision for re-hydration in their exercise. When we heard about the death on the news this morning we were saddened by how easy it is to prevent. OK it’s too early for an autopsy report, and maybe the person had some other health issues, but hydration is quite simply – replacing the liquid your body loses, in other words, drinking sufficient water, not soda, or beer or coffee but water. Once you know you’re well hydrated (and check the color of your pee if you have doubts – it should be pale as pale, if it’s yellow you’re dehydrated) by all means indulge.
It’s sad to think that whilst we were having fun and enjoying a walk in the sun someone else was suffering whilst doing the same thing.