Tomorrow is March 1st. Whoa! As much as I look forward to taking those first steps I think I’ll just have to face the facts that I will never feel prepared. I’ve made a timeline, created dried food recipes and meals, hit the gym, hoarded some gear and money, printed out maps, charts, and itineraries, asked dozens of questions to former hikers, yada yada yada…. but of course, I still feel like there are things I should be doing to get ready for this every spare moment I’ve got. By and large, I’m in good shape, literally and metaphorically. And I could relax, if I was capable of it.
Some great things have happened to me already.
#1. Backpackers magazine is letting me be a gear tester! Something I never dreamed would actually happen. I’m thrilled. I’ll find out this week exactly what I’m getting, but regardless, I’m going to be sporting some gear that my broke ass had no business even touching.
#2. I found a hiking buddy! At least a part-timer anyway. And I wasn’t even looking for one. I just happened to start some friendly conversation with a regular couple at the bar I work behind and it turns out their daughter, Meg, is starting the very same endeavor, on the very same day. Weird, I know.
#3. I have a trail angel for the beginning and end of my hike. Starting in Georgia with my sweet cousin Jessy and her boyfriend Luke, who will not only take me to the trail head, but also hike alongside me for the first two days. Then, one of my closest friends, Allie, will meet me at Mt. Katahdin, to celebrate victory and show me some of the great sites of off-trail New England.
#4. I found a great place for Max (my feline pet, and best friend). My friend Royce will be helping me out immensely by taking care of him for the duration of my trip.
#5. Another one of my closest friends is going to be the best ground control that money can buy. Except she hasn’t asked for any money, which is nice. My friend Heidi, who happens to be one of the most impressive planner/organizers I’ve ever known, is going to send out all of my mail drops for me. She’s already been extremely helpful with planning out the details.
Basically, what this all adds up to, is that I’m an extremely lucky human being for having such support! And thanks! to all of my friends and family for the many ways that you have been truly awesome to me!