心惹かれる風景//A Captivating Landscape

(This is a short essay in Japanese about a landscape that held my fascination.)

Japanese

アウトドアが好きな私は、今まで数々の美しい風景を眺めてきた。中でも、最も一番心惹かれた風景はスイスのアルプスの夕焼けである。

その山はセンティスという。高さは2501メートルで、山頂まで歩くと5、6時間。ケーブルカーもあるため、歩かない人でも気軽に登ることができる。

数年前の夏の日、当時の彼氏と友達と登りに行った。気温は30度で涼しい風が吹いていた。雲のない青空、風に吹かれる松の音、石の輝いた色…。ハイキングに完璧な日だった。

山頂からは6か国の山岳地帯が見えた。一息ついていると、ケーブルカーからハイヒールを履いたお金持ちそうな中年女性が出てきた。皆で笑った。6時間歩いた私たちと彼女の経験は、全く違うだろうと思ったからだ。

昼食を食べると友人は帰り、彼氏と私は山道を進んだ。道は前よりもっと険しかった。狭く、両側に深い谷が見えた。山鹿以外は誰もいない。気付けば6時間。ついに、夜を過ごすホステルに到着した。朝7時からの長旅に疲れ果てていた。会話もなく、私たちは山道の上に仰向けになって寝ころんだ。広い空、古い高山、優しい風。その時、空はオレンジ色に変わり、周囲の山もオレンジ色に染まっていた。まるでどこからか芸術家が来て、すべてを染め上げたようだった。その夕焼けを見て、そばにいる彼と別れざるを得ないことを知っていた。一生忘れない風景になるだろうということも。

English

As a lover of the outdoors, I have seen many beautiful landscapes in my life. Among them, the one that fascinated me the most was the sunset in the Swiss Alps.

There is a mountain there called  Säntis. It has a height of 2,501 meters, and a walk to the summit takes five to six hours.

They have a cable car there, so even those who don’t want to walk can easily reach the summit.

One summer day, some years ago, I went to climb it with my then-boyfriend and his friends. The temperature was over 30 degrees and a cool breeze was blowing. The blue sky with no clouds, the sound of the pines blowing in the wind, the shining stones… it was a perfect day for hiking.

From the summit, we could see the mountainous terrain of six countries. While we were taking a break, a rich-looking middle-aged woman in high heels came out of the cable car. We all laughed, because we thought her experience of arriving at the summit was very different from ours after six hours of walking.

After eating lunch, our friends left and my boyfriend and I continued on the mountain road. The road was even steeper than before. It was narrower and we could see deep valleys on both sides. There was no one there except a mountain deer. Before we realized it, six hours had passed. Finally, we arrived at the hostel where we would spend the night. We were exhausted – we had been walking since 7am. Without making any conversation, we lay down on our backs on the mountain path. The sky stretched out, the high mountains all around, the gentle breeze. Then, the sky and the mountains around us turned orange. It was as if an artist had come from somewhere and dyed everything. Looking at that sunset over the Swiss Alps, I knew then that I had no choice but to say goodbye to the one lying at my side. I knew then, that it would be a landscape I would never forget.

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