side note from Devin: These are all the pictures Jared took, I promise. The pictures are our trek family- minus me. Still so bummed I couldn't go. Oh well. LM is so, so incredibly worth it. Anyway~ enjoy.
A few weeks ago I, Jared, got to go on trek. I had known about this since the beginning of the year. Devin and I had been asked to lead one of the groups as a Ma and Pa. But about 10 days to trek and little man showed up in our lives and Devin had to stay home and I went without her. Devin made sure everything was together and sent me on my way.
Since Devin was unable to come with me I was assigned 2 other people to be in our group Bro.Richards and Sis. Jensen. Sis Jensen is in the Mormon tabernacle choir so she really loves music. I want to talk about the music on trek for a little while. The kids sang many songs while on trek. Most of them are the camp songs that cause me to want to take a baseball bat to the mouth of the person singing the song. For example there is a song about working in a button factory that goes on and on and on forever with only minor changes. Devin is sad that I hate her "do do doo doo" song about sharks. The kids singing the songs where behind us and my boys where yelling back at them to chill out. I just had to change the mood, so I started to sing “Stickshifts and Safetybelts” by Cake.
I will say that while singing the song I thought of how far away my Devin was. I know I do not sing well but my kids where excited to hear something not nearly as annoying. Later in the evening we had devotional with our kids and we started with a song. Sis. Jensen gave a note and I started singing at the random place I go to when I sing. She immediately stopped and said we need to start on the same note. I just looked at her and said that was well beyond my capability. We started again and I am sure I was waaaaaaaaaaay off pitch. I do want to say that no matter how poorly you sing a song if you sing it with a sincere heart your inner voice will be heard by God. Unfortunately my group had to listen to my vocal
On the first day we ran into several problems. For example we went down the wrong way multiple times. The back tracking ended up making us go an extra 2-3 miles. One time we went about a mile and came to a creek crossing the trail we where supposed to be on was only 30 feet away. But the leaders made us turn around and go back and around and cross the river at another location that was equally difficult. Several of the leaders just crossed and waited for us to come back around. By the end of the day the boys and girls where exhausted and just wanted to call it quits. We came to a river crossing around the end of the day but it was raining and the water was high and fast so we went over the bridge. Boy do I love bridges.
The second day the girls had a women’s pull. I want to state in advance that I do not like these type of activities. First of all there is normally a false story given about the Mormon battalion and taking the men away from the hand carts. This NEVER happened. The Mormon battalion happened nearly a decade earlier and no men where pulled off the hand carts for anything other than death or disease. As a matter of fact the handcart pioneers did not want to be on the handcarts they rattled your bones till you wanted to walk. We took one of our girls and she only sat on it for about 4 minutes before she gave up. I will say that our leaders did not give the Mormon battalion story and talked about how the girls can do hard things without the boys. They took the boys ahead and talked to them about stepping up and fulfilling their priesthood responsibilities. I have a problem with abandoning the women but they wanted to do the woman’s pull so I walked beside them and they did very good. They went up one of the steepest slopes of the trek and went down the 2nd hardest slope of the trek. One of the girls, not in our group got thrown 6 feet while going down.
The final day was a grind till the end many of the kids had lost their good nature with one another and it was starting to show. We had a difficult group, because Devin has medical training several kids who in our group had mental and physical disabilities. Everyone was trying to chip in and do their part but several times the kids stepped on each others toes. Bro. Richards went and helped another group who where struggling. They had a girl who was in a cart, not a handcart, that could not walk. Her mother had been pushing her for the first two days and just was struggling. Our kids pushed through and made it to the end.
Back when we where asked to go on trek. I told the people I thought trek was stupid and I made fun of people who go on trek. I had a good time on trek and I would go again if asked. I want to say that after going on trek, I now know with out a shadow of a doubt that pulling handcarts is absolutely retarded.