July 6 & 7
0 miles, 1587.6 overall (Friend’s house)
My double zeros go beautifully well thanks to the great hosts. I’m able to clean out my tent a bit, wash my cook kit, catch up on writing, mail some postcards, and most of all I get to rest.
On the first zero I am up at 6:00, long before anyone else except the dog. I find myself something to eat and sit down to watch TV. When everyone else gets up I cook breakfast for them – eggs and bacon! It’s nice to cook in a kitchen again. By 10:00 I am tired and end up falling asleep to the Wimbledon semi-finals for about 2 hours. Afterward I get some lunch and then Jeanette and takes me to Shelburne Falls to see the glacial potholes there. We spend some time window shopping and then do a little grocery shopping before ending up at home again where Jeremy is smoking a chicken for dinner and has gotten the pool in their back yard clean so I go for a swim. It is weird swimming with a beard. It feels like there’s seaweed all over my face. That night we watch Thor which I find entertaining but entirely lacking in dialogue. I’m surprised there are so many good actors/actresses in it. I don’t get to bed until 10.
The next zero is a bit more productive. I’m up early again but I don’t nap today. I spend the morning getting caught up on writing. By the way, using the internet instead of my phone app allows me to see all kinds of stats on the blog. I saw that I have recently had visits to the blog from Brazil, Venezuela, the UK, and several other countries, so hello to all of the international visitors! After writing I walk the dog and clean out the inside of my tent. Then resupply begins. I open the box Christy sent and inventory it before we head to the grocery store to pick up remaining items like bagels and tortillas. I also pick up a pint of Ben and Jerry’s for the night – because I can. I organize everything, put it in the appropriate stuff sack for my backpack, and stage it for packing in the morning. After another swim I plan out the next few days of hiking while we watch some episodes of Big Bang Theory and 30 Rock. I also glue the treads on the bottom of my shoes. Christy is sending another pair ahead to me but I need to make this pair last almost another 100 miles before I’ll reach the new ones. In the meantime I’m going to call Vasque to try to get a replacement pair. I knew when I got these shoes that they wouldn’t last the entire trip but this pair only lasted about 200 miles before the treads started coming off. That’s a bit ridiculous. Finally we try to go see fireworks. The town scheduled them for the weekend instead of July 4th but they end up postponing them because of a chance of thunderstorms. It looks like this will be a firework-less year for me.
All in all it was a great visit. I ate well, got lots of rest, and in general recharged. I can’t thank Jeremy and Jeanette enough for hosting me. A few days ago I was really starting to feel worn out from all of the hiking without a break, but now my legs are fresh and I should be able to tackle Vermont without a problem! When they drop me off I will be only a few miles from the Vermont border, and a few miles after I cross the state border I will also reach the 1600 mile milestone on the Appalachian Trail!