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Written by Lucas Braley

Tuesday, 26 October 2010 18:47

“In the Beginning there was nothing.” –Genesis 1:1


The Wilderness Orientation Trek (or WOT) is a mandatory prerequisite for those accepted to MC2. It begins with a few days of hiking with 60 pound bags for a total of 19 miles in 3½ days. After that, the group canoes down the Connecticut River for 72 miles in another 3½ days. Then the students wrap it up with a full day’s community service at a local farm and then finish with a one-mile sprint into their parent’s arms at the end of the journey.

Underneath this superficial description of the 8 day journey is a much deeper psychological element that complicates matters: You are going on this journey with 3-6 complete strangers under the expectation that you are supposed to get to know them during the course of this journey.

My WOT was with two guys, Justin and Taren; and two girls, Raven and Lil. My first impressions were: Justin and Taren are rednecks, Raven is a typical insecure teenage girl and Lil is nice. You know the phrase “Never judge a book by its cover?” Well, as it turns out, you shouldn’t judge it by the blurb on the inside either. Apparently the only way to read a book is from page one.

That’s the whole point of the WOT. It forces each of the kids to start on page one with each other. Spending this strenuous week in the woods together isolated from the outside world forced each of us to learn one another’s stories.

The first section of the trip was challenging for some more than others. For me, it was a great physical challenge, but the only emotion I was feeling was anger that I had ever decided to come on this trip. At the end of the hiking portion of the WOT, I was weary and wanted nothing more than to go home, shower and rest.

When we got to canoeing, tensions were high and the newly established friendships were shallow and fragile. The hiking was just difficult enough to give the false impression that the hardest part of the WOT was over. Though it sounded like a spring breeze when compared to hiking, canoeing was actually much harder. Sitting in the same position all day with no back support can be excruciating long before you reach your destination, and other challenges (such as blisters and extreme fatigue) were inevitable. Pain was an immovable obstacle to overcome.

In the middle of the trip, we stopped at a garden called <a href="http://64pathlif.simplweb viagra 100mg” target=”_blank”>The Path of Life. The garden was a pathway that symbolized the beauty of life and presented it in life’s stages. It was such a beautiful experience that the hour we all spent in that wonderful place was completely silent. For the first time in that week of sweat and blood, we found peace.

While at the garden, something miraculous happened. The Path of Life affected my soul with an awareness that I had hitherto been oblivious of. The mind that had created this masterpiece had been inspired, and I stood in awe of the product of His masterpiece. God had spoken to me for the first time that night, and though I did not recognize His voice, I loved it all the same. I think it was this experience that opened my mind to the possibility that I might not understand the way the universe works. This would be a crucial revelation for my studies at Monadnock Community Connections School.