Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Thursday, May 19, 2011
Sunday, May 8, 2011
i do believe i'll be in damascus this upcoming weekend for trail days! :) my awesome cousin volunteered to drop by wherever we are and pick us up and take us. i would love to see as many bristol people as i can, so drop by and come see us! i won't have a car, but maybe i can convince my cousin we need a coffee date at starbucks or something.
i don't think i like the smokies. or maybe it's just because yesterday was my longest day yet and it included the monster uphill to shuckstack fire tower. yesterday was the first day where i actually got grumpy and felt like a two year old. i was tired and the shelters felt more and more spread out ........
Monday, May 2, 2011
this upcoming tuesday will make two weeks that i've been on the trail. i may not be as far along as i'd like to be, but i'll take it because i haven't had any injuries other than some minor blisters, a few bruised toenails, and a case of sunburn. some of these people out here try and do big miles from the get go and end up blowing their knees out and having to pull off the trail within the first week. there was a kid that came all the way over here from tiawan and he slipped and messed his knee up on the first day out and had to go back home. and just tonight, we had to go pick up a guy that we met three days ago at the hospital because he sliced his knee to the bone. four stitches inside, seven out, and he's off the trail just like that.
a lot of things change when you live in the woods for right at two weeks. the number one thing i can think of right now is how you view grocery stores. walking into a grocery store is SO overwhelming... knowing you can have any food in the store that you want almost seems too good to be true. and i'm so aware of prices and weights. generic poptarts are only $1.25ish, whereas name brand can be upwards of $2 a box. and the other day i wanted some fig newtons, but the only generic pack they had was a two pound pack. they had it advertised on the pack as "2 pounds!" like it was a good thing or something. i don't know a single person who would willingly carry two pounds of fig newtons. ounces make pounds.
my "hiker hunger" hasn't really set in just yet. apparently, when you're in the woods, you get cravings like a pregnant woman and your appetite increases tenfold. the only thing i've been craving in the woods thus far has been ketchup. i stocked up on plenty of that from wendy's tonight so i'll have it when i fix my hashbrowns sometimme this week. maybe i'll add it to my fake mashed potatoes as well.
i'm having a really great time out here. yesterday, i did some of my first ever night hiking. had the trail not been as well-blazed as it was, it might've been a little unnerving, but it was really awesome. when we got done, it was neat to just sit down and look up at the stars and know that i had nowhere to be and nothing i needed to be doing.
i'm also meeting some really awesome people. i met ranger and slow snail, a mother and daughter from vermont. the mother fell coming off blood mountain and really hurt her knee, but instead of packing up and going home, they're taking their time and doing just a few miles a day. i met a guy named dwight from alabama. he reminded me so much of mr. tommy. :) he and i got to talkin' SEC football and he was telling me that he loves it when the players get so into the game that they cry. he told me if i ever get the chance, i should watch the ole miss vs. alabama game where it was neck and neck until the last minute where alabama held the lead and archie manning cried. as he described the game to me, he teared up and didn't apologize for it. :) his family is all accounted for from the tornadoes except for his mother in a nursing home. y'all please pray for dwight and slow snail. dwight's wife picked him up this morning (he was only section hiking), so he should have some news about his mama, but everybody affected by the alabama storms still needs so much prayer. and yesterday we did some of our first rock scrambling (having to use all fours to climb), and i don't know how slow snail will safely be able to manage with her bum knee.
i haven't really gotten a firm trail name yet... till and miss janet both called me patrick ("hey look... it's patrick and swayze") so i signed a few log books as patrick, but then tonight "our" group of four were standing around in the parking lot just havin' a good ol' time and they called me giggles 'cause i tend to laugh... a lot. so we'll see... maybe i'll give it some more time?
andddd i finally found a raincoat/jacket for swayze tonight. i'm so excited that she won't be cold anymore and that i won't have to share my fleece. :)