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Does size matter?

Written on: Friday April 20th, 2007

A journal entry from: See you next year!

My gym teacher in high school used to put us students in line according to height. As I was one of the smallest boys I used to stand first or second in this line. It made me feel small at the time.

Years later I was in China for a couple of months and when I was walking the streets I was one of the tallest people around. This made me feel tall at the time.

Recently I had an experience which made me remember this and the relativity of height. In this case the height of the Aconcagua. This is the highest mountain outside the Himalaya and therefore the highest mountain of the America's. And because Ingrid was still recovering from her sprained ankle, it seemed like a good idea to honour this mountain with our visit.

As our Ļbase campĻ for this visit we chose the little town of Uspallata, where on arrival we were warmly (and dryly) greeted by a wind they call the Zonda, which we had heard of and which lived up to his fame. After some more rest for Ingridīs foot and a day behind the computer to share our stories with you, we were ready.

We took a bus to Puente del Inca, where we first had a look at a naturally formed, yellow colored bridge. We were soon glad we didnīt travel all the way there from Mendoza, as other people had done, just to see this. After spending 5 minutes there and picking up a few stray dogs to accompany us, we started our hike.

As Ingridīs foot held up well and the landscape was beautiful again we enjoyed ourselves, and the one dog that kept following us, a lot. In the meantime we were wondering what the Aconcagua would look like, and when we could see it.

As we were approaching a parkranger station on our way to a lagoon, from where there should be a nice view at the Aconcagua, we said to ourselves that we should be able to see it now somewhere. But all we saw were mountains that we had seen for quite a while now and they didnīt look that big. But could one of these mountains be it anyway?

The parkranger soon made us realize that the mountain we were walking towards to and we had been seeing for some time was indeed the Aconcagua. Which made me say out loud: Ļit doesnīt look that bigĻ. Which made the parkranger look a little bit annoyed. After talking some more and learning that the foot of the mountain was still 40 kilometers away it put things a little more in perspective. But still...

Anyway, after some more time in the little park there, taking in some more gorgeous views and saying goodbye to the dog because it had found a whole busload of tourists eating food, we were heading back to go drink a beer and catch a bus.

The next day we were off to Barreal (more about that in the following journal), a little more than 100 km. south of Uspallata. And from here we could still see the Aconcagua. And this time, from this point of view, it did look like a really big mountain. Which was nice.

As I said earlier, this experience made me remember my gym teacher and the Chinese and to think of the relativity of height. And made me put up the question which is the title of this journal: "Does size matter?". And the only answer I have to this question is that it just depends on how you look at it.


From Bro Siebie on May 7th, 2007

Size matters, that's a well known fact. But as one cannot influence his heigth (or just the lack of it), I started working on one of the other 2 dimensions: depth. I managed to have the largest depth among most of my friends :-)

From Bro Siebie on May 7th, 2007

BTW The pictures are - as usual - great! Fantastisch! Lots better than Ingrids last visit to S-America.