Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Escaping from life?

I could not help but to think about what Janelle said the other day when she asked us if life was something that needed escaping from.  While I am not suggesting that everyday life is something that is awful and inherently soul sucking, I guess to some extent the need for variety and thrill is necessary.  Blum describes all of the companions on her expedition and all of the things that they had accomplished in the real world from being a surgeon to a devoted mother.  Though they were afraid of leaving all of these things behind in a potentially life threatening situation on the mountain, they climbed all the same.   If they were perfectly content with they way things were at home or wherever they were before the climb, then they would not have gone through the trouble of going to Annapurana.  Perhaps what I am saying is that even though life does not need escaping from, there are many things that one can not accomplish while in the comfort of one's home.

I am very happy that we decided to revert the syllabus and read this text.  This Annapurana by Blum is such a drastically different story than Herzog's.  I thought that his read like a novel, but this one is far better.  The chapters where they were describing the multitude of avalanches that seemed to be constantly threatening them.   I also appreciate how so many photographs are incorporated into the story.  This simple aspect adds so much life and personality to the women of the climb and the dangers that they faced that I almost feel like I am there with them as they face some of the greatest struggles of their lives.  The photographs simply capture emotion that would have otherwise been lost if there were only words describing their adventures.

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