As of writing we are now at T + 3, three days after my country elected Donald Trump as its 45th President.
On T-T, Trump Day itself, I watched the election on Australian TV. My French and Estonian roommates occasionally popped in as I attempted my best explanation of the Electoral College and why Trump appealed to people. Finally baffled I had to google why do we have the Electoral College?
The answer is basically the founding old, white men didn’t believe in true, direct democracy and didn’t want one densely populated area to pick the President so they spread the vote out. However, they also had wooden teeth and thought leeches were acceptable medical treatments so I don’t see why we can’t revisit their ideas from time to time?
One benefit to being a global superpower is Australia had extensive coverage of our election. The Australian presenters were firmly team Clinton and made no attempt to hide their disillusionment and depression as Trump’s lead continued to grow. The Australian woman reporter in Trump’s headquarters looked like she was witnessing a car crash. I found their lack of neutrality comforting.
Limited to communicating by WhatsApp I stayed in touch with family and friends, but as his victory became apparent and it grew to 2 or 3 in the morning in the US, the texts grew silent. I couldn’t tell if everyone had fallen asleep or were instead curled in the fetal position crying. My brothers were awake. One let me know weed legalization had passed in Massachusetts. The other mentioned I should probably find permanent residency in Australia.
I spent the rest of the day refreshing the growing meltdown on Twitter and Facebook and reading my last day of unlimited articles from the New York Times. Many responses were thought provoking and inspiring, but about the third time I saw a post comparing Trump to Voldemort and urging us to take back Hogwarts, I knew It was time for bed. Everyone dies in the 7th Harry Potter OK! Let’s not model our government resistance on that.
Since I spent an entire day off in front of ABC Australia texting angry rants about the qualities (or lack there of) of each state that turned red on the electoral map, I decided for T+1 I needed to leave the house. After another lengthy round of Facebook and Twitter I finally forced myself out the door.
I figure it’s only a matter of time until Trump sends all women to a mandatory improvement camp to better satisfy the male gaze, so I decided to get some exercise.
I began at a popular lookout called Echo Point in the Blue Mountains. Approaching the tourists I had the odd impulse to shout “Do you know my country just elected Donald Trump?! And we’re all just standing here looking at the view! Don’t you understand? Trump!!!” At this point a kind British woman would hold me while I cried.
Instead I put on Kanye and opted to do the Prince Henry Cliff Walk. I was tired, an unknown part of my body–that I made my nurse friend diagnose through WhatsApp as possibly the SI joint– is messed up from housekeeping, and mentally I was exhausted…so perfect hiking conditions.
The path had varying terrain and views, but nothing that made you want to throw yourself off the edge (except the election results hey-o). There are a few lookouts, each one equipped with a safety sign and lovely views.
I had read reviews on Trip Advisor suggesting parts of the path could be muddy and thus annoying. About 45 minutes into the path, exactly as I was thinking “those people must have come on a rainy day, this path has been completely dry” the path turned muddy. At times it felt like you were hiking through a small creek. The path also narrowed considerably and the amount of mosquitoes quadrupled.
As a solo (and also vain) hiker I attempted a few selfie self-timer shots. Balancing the phone took so long I became inundated with a breed of mosquitoes so aggressive I grabbed my phone and literally ran away. I then walked into a spider that was just hanging in the path. At this point getting muddier and tired of nature I decided I’d had enough and went home.
I think I burned some solid calories so I’ll be in the middle of the pack for our Supreme Overlord’s Make American Women Great Again Fitness Training Camp.