There is some serious stuff going on here in NH! Less then four weeks to go and I am gathering all my supplies and laying the final groundwork for my hike. I went out and purchased my tent, got Star a custom fit dog pack and have started taste testing! My AWOL trail guide arrived making it possible to outline my itinerary; camp sites, restock locations, and where I just want to sit and enjoy the view.
I am working fulltime for the next couple weeks and it is proving to be challenging and enlightening all at once. There is something so precious about the mind of a child. Working in a Kindergarten class brings you back to innocence and a sense of wonder. The cadence of their day a reminder of what will and will not be on the trail. They live by a pattern and when the “unexpected” occurs they must reevaluate and figure out what to do. This is the way of life on the trail. You know the sun will rise and set, you’ll move forward along the trail, you’ll eat to nourish yourself, but to never know where your bed will be that night, or what the weather will bring, these are the moments of growth. Just as a child grows within the boundaries of their class, I will grow along the trails of the mountains.
The innocence of kids. I’m enjoying the shock upon their faces when I tell them about what I’m doing. I lay it out in simple terms and slowly build upon the idea. I’m leaving in April to go hike the Appalachian Trail (this means nothing to them). It stretches from Georgia to Maine (some of them understand this is a long way). I will be walking 2,189 miles (more than 5 miles is just crazy in their minds). I will be on the trail for 5 to 7 months (jaws drop, eyes bug out). I will be carrying my home on my back (they slowly close their jaw and contemplate how this could be true).
The questions: Why? How big is your house? Are you scared?
These are all valid questions, and today Dr. Seuss did a great job reminding me everything will be ok!
Whether you like it or not,
alone will be something you’ll be quite a lot.
And when you’re alone there’s a very good chance
you’ll meet things that scare you right out of your pants!
There are some, down the road between hither and yon,
that can scare you so much you won’t want to go on.
On and on you will hike,
and I know you’ll hike far
and face up to your problems
whatever they are.”