Two Saturdays ago (I think, time is doing its usual thing of escaping any kind of sense or reason) I dragged two of my closest friends up Pen Y Fan, in the Brecon Beacons. When we started it wasn’t raining as much as the air was wet. A cloud swallowed the top of the mountain, a cloud into which we were headed. I was determined that despite the weather we would reach the top, see no views, and come back down again. You can’t come to the Brecon Beacons without climbing a hill! I had said to myself before the holiday. My friends were ever so slightly bemused by the fact we were about to walk up into the grey, unknown mass ahead of us.
At some point, perhaps half way up, we discovered that I was the only one wearing a properly waterproof coat. The others had coats that were fine for a light shower of rain, not for being literally inside of a cloud. I think this caused slight resentment, but onwards we pushed.
Being a bit more used to walking up hills than the others I kept a steady pace ahead. Waiting occasionally for them to catch up with me, each more sodden than they had been before. I was excited by the weather. I couldn’t see 10 paces ahead of me, but I liked the adventure.
Within about an hour we were on the plateau near the peak. Here we could see the dark grey of the wet stone underneath us, and the light grey of the cloud enclosing all around us. And nothing else. We giggled as the wind grew stronger and we made our way to the summit, using the strange figures of other walkers a few paces in front to guide our way. And then, all of a sudden, we were there. We stood right on the top, asked someone to take a picture of us, wild looking from the rain, and then started to make our way back down.
And that was it. That was me dragging my lovely friends up a hill. No breathtaking views, no picnic on the top, but we did it. And all the time I thought, how funny is this and how lucky am I to be walking here with two people who love me, making an adventure of one rainy August morning.