Terry paused and bent over, hands on his knees. He wiped sweat off his brow as he struggled to catch his breath.
Sherry walked up beside him and placed a hand on his back. “You doing ok, Terry?” she asked.
“So far…so good…” he managed to wheeze out.
“I thought you were in better shape than this.”
“So…did I.” His breathing came easier and he stood up straight. He stared down the uphill path through the woods they were hiking along. “I just didn’t know it would be so far.”
Sherry looked at the map on her mobile phone. “It shouldn’t be much farther.”
“You sure? You said the same thing half an hour ago.”
“Don’t worry. It really should be not much farther.” She put the phone back in her pocket and grinned at him. “Look at it this way. You’re getting one heck of a workout, burning up all those calories you ate at McDonald’s when we stopped for lunch.”
Terry cast her a sidelong look accompanied by a frown.
Sherry giggled. “Trust me. It’ll have been totally worth it when we get there.”
Terry sighed and the two resumed their trek along the path. To Terry’s delight, it really wasn’t much longer before the path led them out of the woods and out onto a cliff. They walked up the rail at the edge of the cliff and gazed out at the spectacular view afforded them of a deep valley surrounded by snow-snowcapped mountains.
“Wow!” Terry breathed in awe.
“See? Didn’t I tell you the trek would be worth it?”
“Yes, you did. And you were right. It was worth totally worth it.”
Sherry hugged him and said, “Happy birthday, Brother.”
This story is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “so far”: