She is at the base of Mount Hossdad. She looks up and knows that it will be a treacherous climb. She can see the wind’s shift as they breeze across the massively bald forehead. Mount Hossdad, it must be climbed because it is there.
She sits at the feet of the bulging mass, a piece of grass curling between her lips. She is in deep thought trying to plan her summit. Little Hoss stares up, you must respect the mountain she thinks.
Base camp has been quiet lately, almost routine. There have been assorted deliveries by Clarence the Cat. A dead bird here, a random animal body part there,--the crazy bastard. But he has brought nothing that could be of use to her climb. Newt and Kahn, the two dogs that run the camp, have been a little help, keeping her morale up. She likes to play lick my face and eat my dinner when she has a chance. It’s been a helpful distraction to what she must do.
She has attempted to talk to the quota filling loner at the mountain camp. Whorelly, the fat old cat that has nothing for anyone except a scratch to the ankles. But she had to try, didn’t she? That old fat lady has climbed Mount Hossdad more than any other and knows the tricks and tips. There is even a rumor that she lost an eye on that summit. But then again, don’t we a lose something up there? When you are alone and it’s only you and your wits, something gets left behind. Like Hossdad’s hair, it’s just gone.
Whorelly wasn’t much help, didn’t even let Little Hoss pet her. Of course, Little Hoss knows that she doesn’t so much as pet as she bangs instead. Motor control, still her biggest foe, is tough to come by. It’s not bad on a 60 pound wuss dog like Kahn, but it doesn’t appear to be Whorelly’s cup of tea. But before Whorelly ran off to whatever depths or closets she hides in, she did scream one piece of advice. Always go for the crotch. Little Hoss doesn’t know what that means, but she remembers it anyway. Every bit helps.
She has trained for this her whole life. 18 months of intense cardio and weight training. She has lifted the Barbie Bar Bells so many times that she is in peak condition. The altitude training was accomplished the week before as she scaled the dresser in her room. An easy climb once you figure out that the drawers become stairs once they are pulled out. It was a good work out until her mentor, Hossmom, put a stop to it. “It’s to dangerous!” she yelled “Don’t do it!” Hossmom had screamed. But Hossmom couldn’t understand the need, the intense desire that had risen in her.
She could remember that she had wanted to climb up Mount Hossdad the first time she saw it there. Mount Hossdad, over the generations, had molded and become one with what was known as the Power Chair. This is an old chair where all family decisions are made. It took Mount Hossdads weight and still had plenty of cushion. It would allow him to make his Godfather like decisions with a stoic wisdom. But that was long ago that anyone took this seriously. Covering the top of Mount Hossdad was the top of the kitchen bar and her ultimate destination. The treasures rumored to be there were astounding and only the most daring could achieve victory.
She checked the weather. It called for wistful sleep with a chance of snoring. The time to go was now, she didn’t know when she would have the chance again. She said a tearful goodbye to Newt and Kahn who gently licked her hair. Silly dogs, their ways are so foreign to her but she has come to embrace their monk like wisdom. Even Crazy Clarence showed up with a piece of string. It was time to go, onward toward glory and riches.
She prepared herself by adding extra sticky syrup to her hands curtsey of the popsicle that Hossmom had given to her. Hossmom might not agree with her, but at least she always came through. She consulted her Sherpa, Mr. Frog. They would start with a straight leg ascent, stopping at midwaist and the shallow cliff that protruded there. They would make camp before making the final ascent to the summit. God speed.
Footing on the leg was tough but she was able make a couple of good holds. She grunted with each supreme effort that it took for her to pull upward. She kept reminding herself that she had to push with the legs and not pull with her arms. That was a climbers worst mistake and one that would tire you out easily. At the knee she almost lost her grip and had to use her teeth to bite down on the denim jean landscape. She caught hold and once again willed herself up. The altitude was already affecting her and she lost some of her lunch. It landed with a sickingly “plop” on Mount Hossdads shoe. Grapes are not a good meal before a treacherous climb. But the sugar from the Otter Pop had given her that extra edge to push forward, and she did.
Little Hoss and Mr. Frog made it safely to the lap ledge that they were aiming for. They decided to make camp for awhile as their strength returned. They passed the time by talking gibberish and reading a copy of “My Grandmother is a Hippie”. Her favorite book that had seen her through so many tough times. It would be used again to take her mind off the perils of this journey. She ate a Doritos chip that she had brought with her. Supplies were running low.
But the light was growing dim and she knew that she couldn’t stay here forever. Mr. Frog and Little Hoss again started up, planting a foot on the gut that lay before them. Suddenly, there was a shift and the landscape moved under their feet. It’s a worst case scenario, dear god help us all. Mr. Frog lost his footing and she saw him tumble down the side of Mount Hossdad. “NONONONONONONONphttttt” she screamed as she saw him careen off the side of the knee. She knew that was a fatal wound.
She cried for her lost comrade, but crying would not save her. She then remembered what old Whorelly had said to her. Always go for the crotch. Like Thor the Thunder God she slammed down her size 2 foot straight for the crotch. She was not thinking, she was acting only on pure instinct. She pointed her toe and hoped for the best.
She made solid contact with Mount Hossdad’s Crotch and she heard a massive grunt, followed by an eerie echo coming off the mountain top. “God Dammit, God Dammit, God Dammit” she heard repeated faintly over and over again. But it had worked. Her downward momentum had been stopped and she stood solid. Good Bye Mr. Frog, I’ll see you in the afterlife.
She reached up and gripped an earlike protrusion coming off the side of Mount Hossdad. Her sticky fingers acted like a vice as she used it to pull herself up. The wind was mighty here, but she pressed on. Her foot found a solid hold at an elbow, which then allowed her to put a knee on a shoulder.
Then she stood. She was almost there, so close. There was a strange light coming off the top of the kitchen bar. The light of success, she did not know, but she aimed to find out.
With her other foot she planted on the nose of Mount Hossdad and took another stride to the top. She reached her monkey like hands up and found the edge of the kitchen bar. “Pull!” Little Hoss thought to herself “Pull Damn you!”
And then she pulled.
The sight couldn’t be put into mere words. The exhilaration she felt cannot be written. She could feel the sun shining on her face which was covered in victory grin. The quiet at the summit was deafening. She was overwhelmed. Good friends lost, good times remembered.
And there, at the summit of the kitchen bar, was everything that she hoped for. A spoon lay to the right, a used remote control battery next to it. The treasure was astounding, the legends where true. A picture frame lay before her with some random family in it’s view. The baby looked might cute she thought. The hoard was enormous, the view spectacular. How could she not climb Mount Hossdad? How could she not accept this challenge.
And as the wind swept through her hair, she could hear the sound of glory coming from below.
“Please get your ass off my face” she heard and she smiled.