Tuesday, 26 February 2013

126/111 - Wild by Cheryl Strayed

I had a week of holiday last week and so decided to get something new and shiny to read, of course. The idea was to get something quite easy to read, something perhaps a little trite and trashy, and so I decided to go for this. I first read about this book on an American blog, and I think it's very recently been released in the UK. I think I assumed that it would be similar to Eat Pray Love, however I was so impressed by this, totally blown away.

It's the story of Cheryl, who decides to hike the Pacific Crest Trail some years after the death of her mother has totally traumatised her. She ends up dropping out of college and cheats on her husband and ends up getting involved in drugs etc. and decides one day pretty much on a whim to do this 100-day long hike as a kind of healing journey, I guess. On the surface of it she initially didn't appeal to me as a person as she sounded a little self-indulgent, and some of the issues in her life were caused be her own actions, however I really quickly grew to like Cheryl and her determination, and I found myself really moved by her story. There were a couple of points in the book that made me tear up, it was so moving, and I was so pleased for her when she made it to the end of her journey successfully.

I guess the parts of her that initially made me uncomfortable were more things that I see in myself and don't particularly like, so some of this was like looking in a slightly uncomfortable mirror. I remember a few summers ago taking a trip to that side of the US with my boyfriend at the time and lacking the resolve to do even some of the day hikes where we were (although in my defence I don't feel great about heights) but I am also a monumentally lazy person, so the idea of walking for 100 days makes me feel tired just thinking about it. Would love to do something similar one day though.

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