Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Day 161: It's Almost Over

Woke up early since I fell asleep before 8:30pm. It was close to 6am, and I wondered if I could catch the sunrise. I waited a bit, then layered up and took my camera outside. I went out too early and ended up waiting more, and THEN the sun was behind trees/mountains so it didn't come up above those for another twenty minutes, BUT it finally came up, and I saw it. Sunrise: check.

I hopped back into bed for a little while. Boss and Backwards were awake, but there was little movement. Finally, near 7:45, we all packed up and headed over for breakfast at 8 sharp. We ate everything that was put in front of us. We secretly wanted more, but we stopped after the second pizza tray full of pancakes. It was all very good.

While we were checking out and paying our tabs, we got to talking to Bill about the place and how they came to run it. Very interesting story (and a great guy). There was a big controversy about advertising on or near the AT, but they keep it pretty low key.

After a nice chat, we finally had to leave that haven to finish this hike. It was almost 10am when Bill dropped us off a mike up the river (so it would only be .2 back to the trail - yay!). The three of us waived goodbye and started to hike. It would be another long day, but not quite so rushed as yesterday.

Lots of roots today. We were glad it hadn't rained. Wet roots are very slippery. Boss put his book on whole we hiked, and I let my mind wander and think about lots of things. I thought about how this trail has institutionalized me in a non-institutional kind of way, and I hope I'll make a smooth transition when it's over. (Or at least come out better than Brooks did when ge left Shawshank...) I thought about all the hikers I've met on the trail. Who's off the trail. Who's done. Who's still hiking. I thought about how much I've gotten used to my body always hurting, and how long would it take to feel normal again. Will this be my new normal? Is this what it's like to be old? I thought about what it will be like to climb DOWN from Katahdin when it's all over. How will it feel when I wake up on Friday and have no where to walk?!?!

We stopped for lunch at a shelter and Backwards caught up. Then we hiked on for the next few hours and my mind wandered again. There was a bit of a hill to climb and a great view of Katahdin. It's so hard to believe I'll be there in less than 48 hours! I took a few photos and we hiked on. We finally made it to the next shelter around 4pm and made an early dinner. Tinkle Fingers and Bonne Chance were there making dinner. Backwards and Master Chief caught up and did the same. As we all ate, it began to sprinkle rain. Quick clean-up, then off to pound out another 3-4 miles before setting up camp.

We finally made it to the campground by the lake and set up camp. The sprinkles were on and off (but they left the roots nice and slippery), and luckily, it was dry while we set up. A small snack of hot chocolate and a brownie that Linda had made, and then it was time for bed (and blogging catch-up!). I hope all the rain comes out tonight so we don't have to worry about it in the morning!

Tomorrow is my last full day in the woods!!! Wow.

A call to action: Look at your hands. You're probably reading this from your computer at work or maybe a phone. Your hands are probably nice and clean, or only mildly dirty. Maybe there's a small bit of something under one nail...?

After only one day away from a sink, my hands are utterly filthy once again. It's amazing! Dirt under every nail. A slightly darker shade of skin on my palms. Just gross.

So, go... Wash your hands in honor of me. Because you can. Are you in the bathroom? Why not just go ahead and wash your face, too... Or, if you're at home, go ahead a jump in the shower. Be clean! Enjoy cleanliness!! I just can't wait to enjoy the luxury of sinks and showers and towels and soap... That will be quite nice... I can't wait for that again...
(19.7mi 3st)

-- Posted from the trail...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I read this post after just having finished a ton of yard work and my hands still aren't as dirty as yours! potting soil, manure, and mulch have nothing on what's out there on the AT. I will never take my Bath and Body Works juniper breeze scented hand soap for granted again. Thanks, Carrie!

-Jessica (We had an amazing 3 course breakfast in my motel "Suite" in Damascus, VA.)

P.S- I haven't gotten to your last blog yet, but congratulations on finishing- Such an accomplishment! Come visit us in Atlanta soon!