How far did you walk?
The track is measured as being 96km long. This of course is assuming that it was possible to walk straight along the track. There is nothing straight about the track, in many places you would have to zig-zag from side to side in order to move forward. It was common to have to walk a few metres to the side to be able to move a metre forward! Of course as well as the 96km track, we did a few detours that would have added extra kms, including the 2hr round trip to one of my favourite places – Myola.
How much weight did you lose?
I really don’t know how much weight I lost. I don’t actually own any scales but I was intrigued and did jump on the wii fit for a weigh in. It casually reminded me that it has been 449 days since I last used it! If the wii fit is to be considered accurate, I have lost 6 1/2kg! Even if that isn’t accurate, I do know that the pants I wore over to PNG fell off me when I returned and had to wear a belt to keep them up. Most of my clothes that were too tight are now loose and wearing a belt is now a part of what I do every day. My work clothes are now really loose and I can hardly believe that I wore them at all. I am now fitting back into clothes that I haven’t worn since having kids!
Did you miss your family?
Of course I missed my family, but not as much as I expected. There were moments that I wished they were there, knowing that they would love traipsing through the mud or splashing about in the rivers but overall it wasn’t an environment that I could realistically imagine them in at their age. I was constantly surrounded by people who cared about me when I was away and I knew that the kids would be safe and happy at home with man-child and my parents giving into their every whim!
Was it fun?
The entire experience was amazing. There were times, only a few, on the first 2 days when we were walking for 10 or 11 hours each day that I felt out of my depth and questioned my sanity, then I would arrive at camp to cheers and high fives from those already there and my spirits would lift. I loved being there and the people that I shared the journey with. It was fun to meet new people and experience something entirely new and different.
What did you miss most?
Dry clothes and shoes. Of all of the simple pleasures, getting up and having dry clothes to put on is what I missed most. I usually waited until the last possible moment to get dressed before having to put on wet clothes and shoes. Most days within minutes of walking our shoes would be wet and muddy again anyway and our clothes would be damp(er) either from rain or sweat! I made sure that my sleeping clothes and sleeping bag stayed dry.
Will you do it again?
If you were to call me now and say the plane leaves in an hour, I would be on that plane. My enthusiasm seems to be contagious. Instead of girl-child fretting about me wanting to go back, she is making plans to do her own trek when she is older. I have suggested that it would be a fantastic 16th birthday present!
My biggest concern now is that I am turning into ‘band-camp girl’, you know the one… This one time at band camp! That could easily be me, ‘When I was at Kokoda…’ In fact on of the other trekkers has started a facebook page – Working the fact that I have walked the Kokoda Track into conversation!