April 4 & 5, 2014
Chris and I said our goodbyes to Ray and Gooseberry Mesa to set out on the road to Zion National Park. We took another narrow, rough, dirt path the local town nearby. We stopped at a grocery store right before the park where a person could buy a small box a granola bars for $7. How unexpected being the only grocery store in town ;)
With a little dent in our wallets, we entered Zion National Park. The mountains rose on either side of us as we entered. Stopping at the only campsite in the park, the camp host showed us to a beautiful little spot by a creek. We immediately popped out and wandered along the stream jumping from rock to rock. Some friendly next-door neighbors invited us over for dinner where we got to learn about their Mormon faith and personal backgrounds and we surveyed them for our happiness survey.
The next day we got to know another neighbor of ours named Bill. Bill was a 68 year-old, former nurse from Wisconsin who is traveling arohttp://www.happiness101.net/wp-admin/edit-tags.php?taxonomy=categoryund in his turquoise, custom, 15ft Toyota RV. We invited him to join us on our hike to Angel’s Landing and he gladly joined us. Angel’s Landing was one of the most beautiful and dangerous hikes that I have ever done. The first 4/5th of the mountain was climbing paved path. The last 1/5th was a grueling upward climb with a small metal chain attached to the wall to hang onto. People were coming up and down this narrow way where there was almost always one side of you exposed to a steep drop. 5 people have died climbing Angel’s Landing, which was a crazy thought when climbing up and seeing 12 year-old kids climbing it. It was all worth it once we all reached the top. The view was the most stunning natures I have seen in my life. Chris, Bill, and I just sat down to absorb it all in.
Throughout that climb we got to know more and more about Bill and his thoughts on life. His life was mislead by drugs, but over the years he managed to rebuild his relationship with his family and himself. Bill’s mantra for happiness is to be radically honest to others and yourself. ALWAYS tell the truth. Not only did he keep up with us on the hike at 68, but he added to our experience sharing his philosophy and advice. Thank you Bill for sharing so much with us.
Chris and I left Zion National Park in appreciation and made our way that night to Bryce Canyon National Park. We camped in a random parking lot next to Bryce since it was closed by the time we got there. It was a quite night by the road with a feeling of success felt in our bodies and hearts.