Saturday, August 16, 2008

Cricket less summer – but full of hiking trips

I’m a person of many contradictions, I adore the sport of Cricket but at the same time I have a distaste for organized sports, I have never been into hiking in Pakistan but now I love hikes – mountains have always lured me.

Since 1998 I have played regularly in the premier cricket championships in Colorado Cricket league:

2004: bowling in the nets

I had the great honor of playing cricket for the team of Colorado in 2005 and 2006. This summer (2008) I got infected with the cricket-boredom bug – I unsubscribed to all cricket TV channels that I had, rarely visited premier cricket web sites and asked my wife to throw away my beloved cricket-bowling shoes. I called my team captain and informed him of my decision, I am glad that he knows me well enough that he honored my decision.

One more contradiction is despite all this boredom I won election to the General Secretary of the Central West Cricket Board, elected as the President of my local club, wrote few articles on and have a plan to conduct some interviews of ex-Pakistan players. Absurd, go figure!!!

As I wasn’t playing cricket so I needed an activity, which I did: I got into a group of very cool guys and with them we formed a group of hiking enthusiasts who all share similar passions; Hassaan and I love talking (some would say that is talking-loud, but that is just not true), Abbas wants to end the hunger from the world, Junaid would never quit telling stories about his beloved Toba-Tek Singh, the mild mannered Irfan fills the air with his acute sense of humor and Kamal Tamton (believe it or not Tamton is not a western last name) shares his very educated opinion about every topic under the shade of blue sky. And oh yeah Zedi continues to confuse us how come he is a Zedi and has a different last name too?

This small little group every Sunday morning takes a challenge to hike a mountain in or around beautiful Boulder, Colorado – for most of my desi friends, remember its hiking not rock climbing. The goal of the group is to hike a simple mountain every Sunday, we do one big mountain every month, one really long and big hike a year and we might do one crazy hike in our lives – like twenty-two days trekking to the base camp of K2.

One such big monthly hikes was last weekend (August 10th 2008) when went to the top of Gray’s peek. It was about a nine-mile return trip. In all of my hikes this year I always carried my winter-hiking gear, with the rationale that guys in the Colorado weather you never know. For this hike I intentionally left all that at home or in our ride and of course we faced terribly cold weather, I feared of frost bites – ok I am over-reacting but you get the picture, if not then have a peek at our pictures.

Next month is the holly month of Ramazan and I am not sure we could do much hiking, but the winter will be full of fun filled activities too.

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