I remember fondly where I was around this time in 2016. I was having the time of my life on a sunny island. Really living the Hakuna Matata lifestyle. Well I did have one worry. Would I go to the beach in the afternoon or be athletic and go do some laps in the morning? You can scratch the athletic part seeing that at night I loved to treat myself to a cocktail. I have been to this island, Curaçao, more times than I can count on two hands so I have done all the things you’re supposed to do and the extras. Except for one, which I avoided with the power of love for my life, climbing Christoffelberg while in Curaçao.
Curious why I have been to Curaçao so often? Click here to find out.
I avoided climbing the Christoffelberg because I am sometimes afraid of heights and thus I obviously always skipped climbing a mountain. In my head this has always made perfect sense, however last year I was dead sure I was going to do it. Told everyone I knew that I was finally going to climb Christoffelberg, no matter what it took! Gutsy, right?
Thinking back, I think the reason why I told so many people was so I could not back out. Kinda smart. I postponed climbing Christoffelberg till the day before I flew back. Anxiety? You bet. I had thought that since it was a tourist attraction it would be a fairly easy breezy walk up. I really could not have been more wrong. The beginning is a breeze, but halfway through we encountered people coming down with (some!) blood on their legs. First just one person afterwards about five. Seems like five is not many but it was then that it properly dawned on me what I had gotten myself into!
When continuing the walk transformed more and more into a climb. A climb where you really needed core strength, good balance and steel nerves. Arms and legs being able to bent in various positions, whichever was most convenient to get up. The last part, where you can clearly see the top, is by far the hardest and made me aware that my fear of heights is very real. You walk on these, in my head seemingly loose and super dangerous, rocks where you hop from one to the other in some sort of zig zag to the top.
When I finally reached the top, I came across another feature I had not counted on. The wind. I am what they call a lightweight. The wind at an open space high in the sky scares me very very much. I had no intention of learning how to fly that day so I held on for dear life. Somehow I did manage to enjoy the beautiful landscape that Curaçao has. The views from the top of the Christoffelberg are stunning and so worth the climb! The peace that is found up there is almost surreal.
After a, one cut, safe climb/hike back down I was incredibly proud of myself. Not only had I experienced something new on an island where I have been many times. I also conquered my fear. I literally looked it in the eye and triumphed. I learned that if I, a simple not-so-outdoorsy suburban girl, could accomplish that I could do anything. I just need to be determined, because, I kid you not, I was not leaving Curaçao without climbing Christoffelberg.
I proved to myself that I can do anything I set my mind to.