Day mileage: Absolutely None
AT total mileage: 468
Time: 0 hours
Today's blog post is dedicated to Colonel John S. Pemberton, the least known yet most successful pharmacist in the world, who in 1886 introduced the world (well, more accurately only Atlanta) to his soft-drink concoction which later became known as Coca-Cola. 128 somewhat turbulent years later it is now the largest beverage company on the planet, one of the most recognized phrases in the world (second only to 'ok'), served in more countries globally than are members of the United Nations, and operates more vehicles worldwide than FedEx and UPS combined. For those who know me well, you're aware that I'm absolutely in love with the company history and advertising history of Coca-Cola. Well, a year ago on May 5th I decided for no reason whatsoever to give up my occasional drinking of the product. One month became two, two became six, and at some point I decided just to go a year without consuming a drop. Today my friends, that year came to a close, and I once again tasted the amazing and completely unhealthy beverage that so many people enjoy every day. I didn't just settle for a can or plastic bottle, true to myself I drank Coca-Cola from a 10 oz glass bottle with pure Mexican cane sugar that my mother so wonderfully mailed to me in Damascus just for this momentous occasion. Birds sang, children cheered, angels got their wings. It was a joyous occasion... So, Mr. Pemberton, this is for you my friend.
This is what a zero day feels like.
I 'slept in' and woke up around 8 to a few tents being broken down, although it seems most hikers are staying for the day. When I got out of my tent I was greeted by the warmth of sunlight, and some very early trail magic. Gumby, the previous thru-hiker from last night's adventures, had brought us a gallon of milk, Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal, orange juice, apple pie, glazed honey buns, and ice cream sandwiches for breakfast. I decided in that moment that heaven had arrived just outside my tent's vestibule. I ate this gourmet breakfast with half a dozen other hikers, profusely thanking Gumby for his trail magic generosity.
My day was pretty lazy, all things considered. I apologize in advance if this post is bland in comparison to most. I wandered back and forth throughout town a lot, as once again the Main Street is no more than a 1/2 mile from end to end. Despite the hype the town gets from hikers it's truly a tiny southern no-traffic-light town. I met up with Whitey and Moe when they arrived around 11, and we at lunch at a restaurant called the Blue Blaze Cafe (blue blaze is hiker lingo for a side trail off the A.T.) while Whitey waited for his dad to arrive from Richmond. Moe also was exceptionally generous and bought me my lunch today without telling me. What a guy. Upon finishing, I wandered over to the post office where I ended up having to wait 50 minutes for them to re-open after lunch. A few days ago I left my camera battery charger at the Kincora Hostel and nobody has been able to find it. Despite searching and crossing my fingers, I ended up pulling the trigger (with some computer assistance from home) on a new one from Amazon which was shipped general delivery here to town for me. I'm now able to charge the camera which is insanely good news for myself as I'd cry without that ability.
I took some time this morning and removed a fair bit of clothing from my backpack. I'm mailing home about a pound of stuff, mainly long-underwear layers that are no longer necessary due to the 80-90 degree forecasts. I'll likely get them back when I arrive in the White Mountains a few months from now. I got a flat rate box and sent all that home for $11 or so which certainly won't break the bank. From there it was Dollar General to resupply some food, with the next trail town being about 80 miles from Damascus. I also picked up some general items like shampoo and toilet paper to donate to The Place just to help the Methodist church out with the great service they provide. A leisurely afternoon spent hanging around the hostel and a quick dinner back at Blue Blaze where they offered $2 Mexican beers in honor of Cinco de Mayo. The place was full of hikers, and it's truly exciting to know almost everyone. Many of them came up and congratulated me on my day yesterday... Apparently it was quite a big deal on the trail with people behind me.
Unfortunately there's no cell service so in order to be connected to the world via the 'Town Wide Wifi' (I call bullshit) I have to sit on the sidewalk in front of one of the stores on Main Street. I'm sporting a new set of New Balance Leadville MT1210 trail runners, thanks to NB's Ms. Desto, and am fully stocked on sugary goodness to share with fellow hikers thanks to a box my folks mailed me.
Easy day, but honestly I'm ready to be walking again. So instead of trying to make things up to entertain you, I'll retire for the evening and have some sort of thrilling adventure when the sun comes back up to write about tomorrow.
Onward & upward, as I say.