Day 32 and a zero day
Hiked yesterday: 26.2
hiked total: 538.3
to katahdin: 1640.0
We are taking a zero day in Atkins, VA. so I thought I would just combined two days since I didn't post yesterday.
We left our church pavilion shelter around 7:30 and went to Jerrys kitchen to eat breakfast. We got a ride from him to the trail head so we didn't have to walk, which was very nice. It was a crummy dark and wet day. I checked the weather before we left, and it was supposed to be raining on and off all day while being in the low 30's, which means that it will be icy rain up in the mountains where we were. Thin layers of ice covered roots, rocks, and fallen leaves, but we just watched our steps and didn't have any major accidents. It was chilly, but nothing we haven't been through before I suppose. The real bad part was just that it was dark and if the sky had moods, it would have been grumpy, which doesn't help us out at all on a big day. It was raining off and on pretty much all day, we were fairly wet by the end, but at least there were breaks in between the showers. To pass the time, I told Andy the full story of Harry Potter, and that turned out to pass a lot of time fairly quickly. Between me trying to remember everything, and Andy listening, the miles and hours just dropped. Actually, once I finished, I started telling him the story of Eragon. We did nearly a marathon yesterday, and we were pretty tired to say the least.
As soon as we hit the road, we were happy, and relieved. We crossed the street to call Rambunny at the hostel. Aqua, her husband, answered and I explained I had e-mailed Rambunny and we just got in, and he said she was working at the restaurant which was across the street. So we walked up there and unfortunately missed the restaurant hours by 20 minutes. But as Andy said, everything happens for a reason, and we quickly found out that reason. We knock on the window and an old lady says they are closed, and I try to ask for Rambunny. Obviously thats not her real name, and I doubt she goes by that at work, but thats all I knew, I swear the woman thought I was asking if they had bunny at the restaurant since she kind of chuckled and said no. However, I persisted and said I was staying at the hostel, and confused she walked off to get someone else. A second later, Rambunny opens the door and introduces herself. I told her I e-mailed her in the morning, but she didn't get a chance to check. Luckily, I e-mailed her a week or so ago asking if it was ok to send a package there so she knew we would be there eventually. She told us we could get some food at the gas station and she would pick us up there when she was done in a few minutes and we would go to her house. The pizza machine was broken, and we didn't want to stuff ourselves with junk food, so we asked if she could drive us somewhere else. She said she would, but just as we were leaving, her husband pulled up to get gas and told us there was plenty of food at the house.
We got to the house, and she filled up our plate with big pieces of chicken, a tub of mashed potatoes, creamed corn, biscuits, and lots of salad. We ate it all very quickly, and it was delicious. We were lucky we didn't buy anything because then we wouldn't have been able to eat all the home cooked food! Afterwards she gave us cake and showed us the room. It is more like a bed and breakfast than a hostel here, it's really nice. Andy and I have our own room too. There is a common room with a tv and movies as well as a computer downstairs. Rambunny has hiked the AT 3 times! Between her and Aqua, they have over 10,000 miles of AT experience. Needless to say, she knows her stuff.
Andy's replacement pack did get here, but we felt so comfortable and at home here, we decided to forgo the excuse of waiting for the pack and take a zero day anyway. Later we realized we would be getting into the town where we sent all the extra food to on Sunday which means we would have had to wait until Monday when the post office was open anyway, so it's really not a lost day.
So we are here relaxing. Andy is napping after a movie we watched. I think Rambunny said she was making ribs tonight so we are very excited. There are two section hikers here, but not too many hikers have gone through yet. This is actually their first North Bound season which means Andy and I are the 2nd and 3rd thru-hikers she's had this season, and within the first 10-15 she's had yet. We are excited to be one of the first dozen to be on the wall of heroes (a wall of pictures of people summiting katahdin.)
Time for more relaxation and rest. My feet were in dire need of a rest. Service is still spotty so we will see when I will get the next entry out. We will be in Bastian (where our food is) in 2 days, so if worst comes to worst, I'll try to use a computer there.