Hello Goodbye

Pilgrim, Catherine and MIL Alice

NOC, Bryson City, Day 18 Pilgrim, Catherine and MIL Alice

Day 18 started with a great breakfast with Catherine and my MIL.  I heard from SlimTim during the early morning and he sent me an email from his friend Monty.  Monty included encouragement for me that I really appreciate.  Monty also said, “I have found in personal challenges pride and humility can get confused.  Pride prevents humility, but humility brings about a certain sense of pride.”  I’ve spent some time pondering his words as I climbed today.  For sure I feel the humility that comes from being a speck on a massive mountain and the sheer force of nature that is totally beyond my control.

After farewells to my wife and MIL, I hiked from Nantahala Outdoor Center (mm 137.1) to Sassafras shelter (mm 144).  I met a couple of hikers at a water stop and they were definitely hiking to the tune of a different drummer! To tell you the truth, they made me a little uncomfortable.  I admit to a little paranoia with these two, but I soon got over it.

At Sassafras Gap Shelter, I met a new trail mate, Turtle, who is close to my age.  We had a really nice chat.  I had hoped to send a photo but the signal tonight isn’t strong enough. I’ll try and include it tomorrow.

I was a little depressed yesterday until I saw my lovely bride (of almost 25 years.)  My hip was aching, my feet were sore, I had a blister on my little toe, and was totally exhausted from the climbs of the day. But she had all the meds needed for the hip and blister, she showered me with loving attention and I had a good night’s rest.  l was ready for the trail this morning!  Thank you, honey bunch.

Since my pictures didn’t upload Catherine is including a couple of photos from her drive back to Tennessee today.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park by Catherine

Great Smoky Mountains National Park by Catherine

Catherine dropped a pack of food and supplies at Fontana Village Lodge for me to pick up Thursday or Friday.  I couldn’t ask for better support!

Fontana Dam, Day 18 Catherine and MIL Alice

Fontana Dam, Day 18 Catherine and MIL Alice

Starting  MM   137.3  Nantahala Outdoor Center
Ending   MM   144     Sassafras Gap Shelter
6.7 miles for the day.

From The Trail,
Pilgrim

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16 Responses to Hello Goodbye

  1. jennyraynes says:

    So impressed Lee. You have done so well – what great determination and stamina you have . I am enjoying the posts each day and the photos are great . What amazing blue skies. Hello to Catherine too , Barry and I are down in Rockford so good memories of our walls last summer along the river . Hope you have a good day xxx

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  2. Eileen Waddington says:

    What a great team you and Catherine make, I am sure her support and encouragement helps you in those tough climbs. Was walking in the Lakes on Monday so I was with you in spirit 🏃👍

    Liked by 1 person

  3. agent 314 says:

    Mornin’ Pilgrim… you take it easy up there. Up so high, no doubt, you are closer to the Creator of the Universe than most of us. Listen as He speaks to you up there on the mountain! He speaks in mysterious ways (like maybe through sore hips and toes!) Praying for you, young Pilgrim!

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  4. Avery and I look forward to your posts each day and talk about them every night. We are taking this journey with you in spirit. Keeping you in our prayers and hope that we will be able to meet up with you when you hit Virginia to take you to dinner and offer you our home to do laundry, shower, and rest up for the next leg of your journey. God speed and thanks for sharing!

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  5. Cindy says:

    With you every step! Hope you have a beautiful sunny day!

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  6. We too, are still watching these posts each day…thank you! We always feel as if we are right there with you. As you said– solo, but not alone. I’m positive Catherine was as happy for that visit…reassuring, reenergizing for both. Eileen is right– you are a great team– you couldn’t have come even this far if not. It’s a great testament to your relationship and to you each individually. An incredible journey together… “Good timber does not grow with ease; the stronger the wind, the stronger the trees…” We hope it’s another great day on the trail, Pilgrim. Take good care.

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  7. Dusty Stephens says:

    Pilgrim – On behalf of those of us who will never tackle the AT, thank you for allowing us to experience that great adventure vicariously through you. We enjoy your words (which beautifully reflect your heart and your humor), as much as your photos. Buddy, you’re a wonderful writer! Hope you continue to share that gift for years to come.

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  8. Vicki sparks says:

    This is so inspiring to read Lee, as my former FIL,I send you nothing but encouragement! Catherine you are just a gem supporting him. Doug and I really look forward to your updates…Onward!

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