Hike without Shoes

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I went to New Zealand with my Girl Scout Troop this past Christmas holiday, and while there we spent more time than we would have liked hiking in the rain. We had spent the first half of the day sea kayaking, but the wind speeds increased and we had to get off the water. Half of our group took a boat back, and the other half of us, having had enough time in wobbly boats, decided to hike. We sent all our gear with those boating, and started off on our way. Because we had been kayaking that morning, I only had my water shoes to wear. Well, those things hate my feet, and just minutes into the hike my feet were burning with blisters. One of our guides, Sally (or as the Kiwis pronounce it, Selly), had been hiking without shoes the entire time, and as I got fed up with my burning feet, I decided to join her. Oh, what a liberating feeling! The rain had made the path into almost pure mud, and as disugsting as it sounds, the mud felt marvelous on my blistered feet! It was so nice to have that cool mud between my toes and cooling off my blisters. It could be a little painful hiking over the rocky sections of the trail, but the majority was muddy, and it was well worth the little pain of the rocks to be free of the excrutiating pain my shoes gave me. That was a hike I will never forget!

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