Backpack Tales: Part One
I was born of sturdy orange canvas and plastic. From my place of birth in a metallic warehouse, I was transported along with others to a shopping mall. There, I was hung by my straps with others on a display rack till he came in. There was an instant connection between the two of us. His hands were rough with calluses as he caressed my waxy skin. I was enchanted by his electrifying weather beaten eyes. He was chatting casually to the shop assistant about a trip. That was when I knew that he and I were going to be soul mates for life.
He looked at a couple of my friends on display, but they didn't feel right. It didn't take long before his gaze was firmly fixed back on me. He was an adventurer and I was his type. My zippers nearly flew when the assistant finally took me down and handed me over to him. Before I knew it, I was accompanying him on a flight to a city called Chiang Mai.
He was part of a like-minded group of adventurers, but I never left his side. A local going by the name, Sart received the group and led them to a line of bicycles. It was my first bicycle ride ever and the wind in my face was an exhilarating feeling. I hugged his back as he cycled around Chiang Mai’s heritage sites.
The flavours and sights I saw were eye opening for a sheltered backpack like me. Thankfully, he was an experienced biker who always made me feel safe. In return, I carried his passport and valuables inside me. Ever so often, he would check on me whenever he took a sip of water. Before long, it was night. The group watched a medley of cultural performances at the Old Chiang Mai Cultural Centre. It was a real treat before the gruelling day ahead.
Early next morning, I was hurled into the bustling world of Mae Malai market. I proved invaluable as I held vital supplies for the gruelling trek ahead. Then, we trekked off to a Karen hill tribe village in Mae Taeng in the humid forest. It got really dangerous as there was no path on parts of the trek. But, he watched out for me as he used the trees and rocks to haul both of us up the steep slopes. I was relieved to see the village before dusk as I was pretty stinky from his sweat.
The next day, we were back in the lush green forest again as he hiked towards a camp full of this huge animals. I later learnt that they were known as elephants and even got the experience of riding on top of one with him. The great height was jarring at first, but it proved to be a great vantage point to view the beautiful forest backdrop. This was the perfect reprieve before being plunged into the hair raising watery adventure that awaited us.
What sort of watery obstacles lay ahead for our brave orange backpack?
Will the orange backpack survive this wet adventure?
Check back tomorrow to read the stunning conclusion to this tale!