Picture is Roadrunner’s! Sam, Roadrunner, Chewy, Captain Planet
April 9 2015 Sorry guys I missed a day!
We took off today running in a group, yelling as we flew down hills. Roadrunner got out ahead and Sam, Chewy and myself walked along for awhile. We hit Jacob’s Ladder and Chewy felt the impact of the wiggles and swiggles of the steep trail. At the next shelter we had our first lunch with Gigi and Magoo, who later became a huge part of my hike. It’s funny when you meet strangers not knowing what an important role they will play later in your hike. It is a truly unique experience to think about how you know a person as a stranger and how you perceive them after sharing intense experiences together. The quick pace of bonding makes this an absolutely astounding element of a long distance hike. Chewy hiked late into the evening until we reached the Fontana Hilton, making this my biggest day of twenty three miles.
Just before the Fontana Hilton I met a group of people that looked quite exhausted. We were cruising along, but stopped to say hi to the hikers. This is the day I met Yonder.
Ropeburn, the choir boys, Hemingway and several other hikers were at the Fontana Hilton that night. I had caught up with my bubble. We spent the night by a huge bonfire watching the stars and stretching our sore limbs.
I took a nasty shower in the facilities provided. I was happy to wash the grime away, but the shower itself had accumulated a layer of mud on the floor, sprinkled with band-aids and hair. I was too tired to care.
Trail log: Fontana Hilton
I cannot write off threats as glimpses of passing thoughts. It is almost never passing, it moves right along with us. It remains, stagnates as I carry it, constantly reminding me of its presence. Comments about my body, comments about my sex, an awkwardness that doesn’t seem to fade. This world has deem my actions unsafe and therefore any violence that occurs is seen as justified. To be more than human, more than this or that or even a name, to be loved and to be cared for, when and where can we draw that line?
How do I cope with that violence? Should I respond with force? Expressionless and drawn in, drawn forever along these old lines, no-one understanding what terrors an off-hand remark can inspire. They just let it slip by, fall out, squirm about on the ground. There it is.
People worried about what they are, what they are not, what they will never be. There is a shortage of willingness to become, to be at peace with what is. I’m not going to let it be that way. I am not afraid. I am not ashamed. I will be strong.
Why are you hiking? That question that everyone asks. Some people hike for pride. Some people hike for show. Some for company, some for superiority, but some of us just hike to become strong enough to do it.