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Hiking In South Tyrol -- Day 6

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It's day six. We have the same goal as yesterday. Well, it's sort of the same goal. Today there will be a party at the top of the mountain. Today we have a GOAL. We take a different route, one worked out with little metal instruments and a calculator by Andrew the mountain goat breeder. He's serious about this route business. Me? I look up at the peak and say, "Up there! That's where we're going!" As long as you're going up, what's the problem, right?

Mountains aren't that simple.

Today, I make my gluten-free pasta for myself and Goat Man. He's finally decided he likes gluten-free pasta. Today I drown it in a tomato and artichoke sauce I made the night before, bang it into two Tupperware-like containers, wind rubber bands around them and ease them down into my backpack.

Taking a different route pleases me. I'm not sure one can learn anything about the world by taking only one path all the time. Sometimes in Munich, I'll walk down a street I've never been on before just to see if the world works differently there. Sometimes it does.

The days in South Tyrol are growing hotter and hotter. We rub sunblock all over ourselves before we set out. It's so hot that we're drenched in sweat-slash-goopy sunblock after only 30 minutes and stay wet and goopy all day. Thankfully Andy Goat Guy is carrying three bottles of water in his backpack today. Yeah, he gets to carry the water. I'm not an idiot.

One advantage of the sweltering heat is that we are almost alone on the path. We walk fast and rhythmic with about twenty meters between us. Neither of us likes to talk when we hike. It's not the time to talk; it's the time to think. And I do. I think about the book that will be coming out near the beginning of September. Conversations with S. Teri O'Type. A very risky, neither-fish-nor-foul type of book. It's humor, which some people will get, some won't. I remind myself that I like the book. Very much.

When we reach the first hut, we decide to have a rest on the wooden sun chairs and refresh ourselves with wine/beer. After considerable difficulty at communicating with the girl pouring drinks, I come back with a beer for Andy and a wonderful glass of Gewurztraminer for myself. The wine order turns out to be what the Germans call "ein schweres Geburt" (a difficult birth), but finally I get a cold glass of really really good wine. This is what we call "die Belohnung" (the reward).

Another hour to the top where the festivities have already begun. We sit on more wooden sun chairs and drink more wine. The music can't keep us there long, so we head back to the valley. Andy the mountain goat breeder is dying to go shopping again.

I must be off,

Keep up with ALL TEN DAYS of hiking in South Tyrol.

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