My legs were on fire, the sun was so hot my shirt was glued to my back with a layer of sweat; I had already sacrificed my body to the mosquitoes and continuously itched. Why was I subjecting myself to such conditions? My family’s annual camping trip to Twin Lakes/Mono Village, California. We had gone to Mono Village since I was 7 years old and I have always loved it. It is one of the few times my family and I forgot about the little worries in our life and escape into an oasis of pine trees and camp fires. Hiking was a must on these trips, and our favorite was the 10 mile round-trip hike to Barney Lake.
We never complained on the hike because we knew it would be worth it in the end. However this year had been tough, my parents had been divorced for a while but my mom had started dating. It was weird seeing her with someone else, and I wasn’t sure if I liked it. I lagged behind the hiking brigade and glared at my mom and her boyfriend up ahead. I had been bitter all weekend, and my mood brought everyone down with me. Even my brother began to avoid me. I slowed my pace even more as the others trekked on. I miserably thought how hot and boring the hike was, how horrible my life was, and how hurt I felt that my brother and I were no longer the primary focus of my moms’ devotion. Just as I was cutting the cake for my pity party, I ran smack into my brother.
He and the rest of the group had stopped in awe. I looked up; about to whine about their sudden stop when I caught sight of a dazzling lake, surrounded by a rocky beach of pine trees, it seemed surreal in its perfection. The scene was completed by the two colossal, yet stunning, mountains stretching up in the distance; the scene reflected back to the heavens from the glassy surface of the lake. Barney Lake. It was the thing that stopped us from giving up on our hike and going back to the campsite, an exquisite wonder that Mother Nature bestowed upon mankind.
Why had only moments earlier I used such a petty reason to be ungrateful? I had so much going for me in life and was very fortunate. My temper tantrum seemed ridiculous as I drank up the sight, imprinting it in my memory to save for a rainy day. I glanced at the others, who were equally admiring the sight. I edged closer to my mom and embraced her. All the tension between us broke free and soared up into the sky, flying away forever. I then realized that the world is an amazing place and being upset about inconsequential things set up a barrier between the wonders of the world and myself. Tears came to my eyes as we released from our embrace and as a group we walked closer to the sight to take pictures and bask in the glory that was Barney Lake.
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