The obstacles have wrecked me. I began this journey hale and happy. Now… now I find my vision blurred and my bones aching. Every step hurts, every breath burns.
There are others beside me, fellow pilgrims in this march of suffering. Their hollow eyes and desiccated limbs reach forward, grasping for some mirage of wonder that hangs just out of reach.
We amble forward as one, the scraping of worn limbs on hard stone and the wheezing grind of breathing. Nothing can stop us.
We are there now. I can read the words. I can smell it. Taste it.