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I have seen millions of butterflies. They were so many that they covered trunks and branches of trees, sitting close together and creating a pattern of red and brown. Suddenly one of the branches started to move and a swarm of wings swirled around me, and my blissful smile, like autumn leaves. The butterflies and I have travelled the same distance, as they migrate from the region around the American-Canadian border to arrive in the highlands of central Mexico.

The bike and me is however not as light as the butterflies and cycling in the mountains has been heavy. I am travelling on small and snaky roads, where I can climb uphill for hours while the distance is hardly visible on my map. The roads are ascending where the air is thin and cold. One climb ends at an altitude of over 9 000 feet. The sun and struggle overheat me, but as I start to descend I get chilled down by the cold wind while soaked in sweat.

The shift of hot and cold also hits me as I reach one of the valleys and the town of Valle de Bravo. I get sick, all emptied of food and energy, shivering with fever on a hotel bed. After a few days I finally have enough strength to continue on my mountainous path, but sometimes I feel almost as week on the roads as I did on that hotel bed. But there is still something magnetic about the mountains. They are so striking and sublime, which makes all the strain worthwhile. And that blissful smile of mine continuously appears on my sweaty face between tired gasps of air.

Nobody really knows why the millions of butterflies fly here every year, but maybe they are drawn to the mountains the same way that I am.



  1. Feyzullah Yilmaz Wednesday, March 3, 2010, at 2:33 PM

    a very nice text hanna.

  2. karin Thursday, March 4, 2010, at 11:35 PM

    hey i love your blog

  3. hanna Tuesday, March 30, 2010, at 8:11 PM

    I love your comments.

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