It is amazing how when you are on the trail your life takes on a different set of priorities. The small “wins” in life are things you would normally take for granted. You end up doing things on a weekly basis that were never a part of your life before but you now rely on. You are living completely separate from most of the comforts you knew, but you quickly adapt and your life now feels normal, memories of your old life and they way things were done retreating into the distance.
1. Free laundry soap at the laundry mat, you use it even though you have allergic reactions to some detergents
2. All you can eat, anything. (If there is an eating contest you want to be around for Rooster to attempt it!)
3. A half used bottle of hotel shampoo in the hostel shower. You don’t want to carry this with you on the trail because of weight but you also don’t want to buy new shampoo for each weekly shower!
4. A shower- I don’t think I have beat the 5 day mark yet but I am sure it will happen soon
5. You look in your food bag and realize you have an extra dinner, you literally jump for joy because you are always hungry
6. You only have 5 more miles to hike, you have already gone 15. (Don’t get me wrong, I love the hiking but after 15 the toes are sore!)
7. You can charge your phone, even a little…. you get phone service. (AT&T folks; don’t think you will have ANY service for the first 2 months of your hike, you won’t!)
8. The sun comes out after getting rained on for 4 hours and you get to dry out your clothes (the only ones you have)
9. Trail Magic Hot Dogs (trail magic anything)
10. Free Transportation -Hitching a ride within 5 min/ shuttle comes with hostel stay
11. Small downtowns Everything you need to re-supply is within 2 blocks and you can also grab a beer and a burger before hitting the trail
1. Living in a tent instead of paying rent
2. Drinking Starbucks instant coffee made on my camp stove every morning for breakfast
3. Cracking ankles and strained knees
4. Waking up watching the sunrise and being present to appreciate each sunset
5. Feeling healthy
6. Feeling hungry!
7. Seeing wildflowers daily that I have never seen before
8. Invigorating mountain views
9. Carrying everything you need to survive (food, water, shelter, clothing) in a pack on your back, day in and day out.
10. Getting rained, snowed, hailed and ice rained on- for fun
11. Learning more about the cultures we have around out country from the people you have the opportunity to get to know each day.
12. Greeting every other hiker you see, and also the towns people with a huge smile and a hello. The AT community is a friendly bunch!
These were just some thoughts I had this afternoon as I was sitting by the river. I am still working on another update which I hope to have done soon!