It’s day fifteen and another rest day, my third since hitting the trail. The siren’s lure of a hot shower, a comfortable bed, and food that does not need rehydration has drawn me from the trail once again. My plan was a motel stay every two weeks or so. At my present rate of nights in motels, I will have to mortgage the house (sorry Catherine).
I have now hiked 109.8 miles on the A.T. with the hiking poles pictured above. I hiked a little around Tennessee hills when I first bought them. But today, I noticed the cross on the poles for the first time. I sent the picture to Catherine, knowing she would appreciate and find comfort in the symbolism. In this short time on the trail hiking alone, I have discovered once again, I am never alone.
I ordered a new sleeping bag and I am praying this one helps me get more sleep on the trail. The write-up and reviews say it is for the “restless sleeper who tosses and turns.” Sounds about right. Catherine will deliver it to me this week!
Because I have this extra time I will share a few random thoughts from the trail. I knew before I started this hike that I would be stepping out of my comfort zone. It wasn’t until I started that I realize just how much. Once again, the A.T. looks a lot different from my easy chair in the living room!
First, it has been years since I have camped out but l felt comfortable doing it again even at age seventy-one. However, I never camped in winter weather much less during storms. I’ve been caught twice in snow storms when I couldn’t get off the trail. The first one SlimTim and I weathered in our tents, and the second I spent in a shelter. Standing outside in 23-degree temperatures to do anything is a challenge and I guarantee I’ve been out of my comfort zone. I also used an “outhouse” when I was younger, but at seventy-one, this is definitely out of my comfort zone. (And I won’t even discuss using the woods.)
Then there’s the bunking with twenty other people men and women. That takes me way out of my comfort zone too! I may have tried to avoid showers when I was a kid but these days I like a daily shower, and when I don’t shower every day I feel very uncomfortable.
Naturally I’m out of my c z, however, that isn’t all bad – maybe you can teach an old dog new tricks. More lessons coming from a mountain just down the trail …
Starting MM 109.8
Ending MM 109.8
Zero miles today but I am rested and ready to roll tomorrow!