Helps mum find joy again

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - News -

“We each had our own per­sonal jour­ney and rea­sons why we were there.

“We got on fa­mously from the mo­ment we met – it’s like Kar­lee knew these were the peo­ple I was meant to go with.”

The trek from Gubeikou to Jin­shan­ling to Si­matai in­volved climb­ing over rocks, bal­anc­ing along nar­row parts of the wall and walk­ing up steep as­cents in 35-de­gree heat.

But Ms Laudze­vics said the four women sup­ported each other through it all.

“There were days when we were quiet and re­flect­ing, but a lot of the time there was a lot of laugh­ter – which was good.

“It was also a hum­bling ex­pe­ri­ence to learn how The Great Wall of China was built.

“Peo­ple and an­i­mals car­ried bricks from up to 80km away. Many peo­ple died dur­ing its con­struc­tion. Once you learn about the history, it makes you look at your life in a very, dif­fer­ent way.”

On the fourth day of the trek, Ms Laudze­vics scat­tered some of Kar­lee’s ashes at the sum­mit of the Watch­ing Bei­jing Tower on Mt Si­matai.

“It was the first time I’ve felt peace. One of the big­gest com­pli­ments I heard af­ter­wards was that our guide, who couldn’t speak English, told the in­ter­preter that he wished he knew what us girls were talk­ing about be­cause we were laugh­ing so much.

“I’ve now re­alised that it’s hard to find joy in life so when you find it – you have to make the most of it.”

The Merry Trekkers man­aged to raise $38,000 be­tween them for the Kids Can­cer Pro­ject through Trek4aCure.

In the lead-up to the trek they held a num­ber of fundrais­ing ini­tia­tives, in­clud­ing movie and trivia nights, raf­fles and auc­tions. Funds are still be­ing ac­cepted at great­wallofchina2014.ev­ery­day­hero.com/au/kar­lees-army.

The Merry Trekkers (from left, front ) In­grid Laudze­vics and Laura Cantrell with (back) Kim Bel­ley-Bab­bage and Gwen Buch.

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