Petroglyph Point Hike, Mesa Verde

Pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional

Buddhist proverb, or something

This one wasn’t as long as some of the others, but the loop that leaves from the Museum goes along the mesa rim, then down into the canyon to the petroglyph panel, then back under the rim to the museum. It’s a nice walk. The top trail is super easy, the route down to the petroglyph panel is very well traveled with easy steps, and the trail under the rim is more varied and interesting, with a lot of clambering around rocks and through narrow chutes. There are a couple of cliff dwellings on the route.

I practically skipped through this hike because I was down a tooth! This might be a metaphor for all the rot that I’ve been keeping inside, which this trip, these hikes, and yanking that rotten molar might have helped me finally get rid of.

Seriously though, I didn’t know how much that tooth pain and infection were affecting me until the source was removed. There’s probably all sorts of lessons in here somewhere about putting off doing the thing that will help the most, because you’re too busy and don’t have time, until you have to make time, and it’s an emergency, and then it takes like 20 minutes and the relief is immediate and you wonder why you didn’t do it sooner.

I don’t have a picture of the molar, but I can still hear the sound of the root cracking away from the jawbone and the dentist scraping the infection away. Today I am grateful for modern dentistry and novacaine. And that there was no pain whatsoever today while I had a leisurely stroll through the neighborhood of some 13th century ruins on a gorgeous fall day.

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