Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Cave Woman: Road to Hana Part 2

I learn something new about myself every day. 
Weird fact #317: I like to crawl through caves. 

I'm starting a cave rave. I'm on that cave wave. I crave the cave. All righty; I think I'm done with that. I just like to make things rhyme and cave is just way too easy.

W took this of me at the end of our cave crawl. I would like to entitle it: Liza Jane the Blonde Explorer Takes on a Scary Cave in a Red Dress and Tennis Shoes.

You are thinking, "What in the world Liza Jane? So you were just driving along the Road to Hana and decided to venture into a cave?"

The answer is yes. But I did not find this cave through intuition like some kind of Magellan or Americas explorer. I have to come out and confess that we had a very detailed guide book that explained the Road to Hana really well. And it was telling us to stop at certain mile markers for certain excursions. I don't know why, but the cave trail seemed adventurous to me.

Truth be told, the book said that we would end up in a green, lush scenery, not some wild lion's mouth. So we knew we would get out, and that we would not be eaten by a beast or kidnapped by people concocting hard drugs. But there was a moment there when I was thinking, "I really hope I see a light soon because this is the darkest, tightest spot I've ever been in for sure."

We drove up, and I expected to see a huge hole in the mountain. Instead, there was this little hole that looked like an animal had made. I happened to have my solar powered flashlight in my backpack, I think to my husband's dismay. And before we could stop ourselves, we were stooping and sliding underneath solid rock.

Okay, you've not known real darkness until you've been in a cave. I couldn't see a millimeter in front of my face. And it was chilly and pretty damp. Once we got away from the beginning, and the light left us officially, we both had unannounced moments of panic that we would not even announce to each other. I acted like I was skipping through the thing, and I could hear W getting frustrated. Then I remembered that he didn't have a flashlight and was probably about to break his neck. So I ran back to him and worked out a system where I would walk in front of him while he stayed put, and I would shine the flashlight back right in front of him so he could see to walk to me. Then I would go and shine back. Go and shine back.

There were some pretty tight spaces up in there. We had to crawl up and slide through some holes the size of W's body. I don't think this was his favorite excursion on the road. We got lost for a little bit I think. I scratched my knee on a boulder as I was crawling up into an opening. We definitely didn't go in the way we came out. There were lots of rocks, and once when I flashed the light around, saw the dripping water from the ceiling, the little dark coves and corners, I realized I was in a cave and said, "Okay. Where's the exit? We have to get out of here now."

Then I saw the light. It did end up somewhere. Thank goodness. Now I didn't have to find the author of that guide book and give him a mean piece of my mind. We would be okay.

But it wasn't over. Once we got out and saw the little forest beyond the cave walls, we wanted to see it. So there was more crawling up steep hills and rocks into a tightly packed bamboo forest. We found a tiny trail down to a stream that led into a waterfall. Nice.

Right: Sweet, happy husband glad to be out of the dark cave, swinging from vines like him Tarzan, and me Liza Jane. Left: You can see the well-beaten path that led down to the stream (sarcasm--it was not well-beaten but we were when through with the whole cave and forest nonsense we had gotten ourselves into). 

And then it was back into the cave, trying to figure out which way we came, crawling through holes, ending up in little cave coves that led nowhere, frustrated with the cave, each other, the darkness and the flashlight that was just not bright or big enough for the both of us.

Just to give you an idea of how dark it was. See my little yellow and weak flashlight. You can hardly see me. Man, it was dark. This was actually taken after we crawled through the vine forest, in the daylight before we started blindly finding our way back to where we began this mess. 
Now you may add cave woman to my silly little record. 

There is always a light at the end of the cave so be brave. And behave. It's your path to pave. Because you can save whatever you crave. You don't have to be a slave. Don't forget to shave. I have to go call Dave. 

Liza Jane

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