“This is ridiculous,” I called down to Scott, thirty feet below me on a trail of our own making. “This is the kind of stuff you hear about on Dateline NBC.”
With that, he and I started to create the opening monologue of the program that would tell our tale and subsequent demise.
It was pouring rain when the three hikers decided to set out at 5pm to hike a steep, uneven trail overlooking Italy’s coastline. The two men were in the military and on leave. They wanted to make the most of their one day in Italy’s famed Cinque Terre region, so decided to set out despite the poor weather conditions. The woman with them had only met them that morning on the train and decided to join them. At their halfway point, unable to find the next trail marker, one of them forged ahead, down a rock path meant only for access to the water pipe that ran along it bringing water from one mountain town to the the town below it.
Scott and I laughed at our tale as Greg forged ahead of us, scoping out our descent. “This is why I only tell my mother what I’m doing after I’ve done it. And you know what? I left a note on my dresser as to where I’d be today in case I didn’t return, and we’re no where near that.” I know this all could have had a bad outcome but – as the Dateline story would explain – I figured I was safe with two US Military-trained men.
“Post here,” Scott said to me pointing to a rock wall. I figured out that “post” meant “put your hand here for support.” He graciously did that at all the tricky spots. Thanks to these two men, I made it down safe and sound, though soaking wet. And here I am able to tell you about it, so you won’t have to hear about it on Dateline.