5-5-12 (Cinco de Mayo)
AT miles hiked today: 5.8
Total AT miles hiked: 131.4
It's 7:30am and raining on my tent again. Yesterday I dawdled the morning away and it was very nice, almost like a day off. I'm only planning six miles for today, so there's no rush to get up into the rain. But I do have to use the privie and once I'm up I'll probably stay up and pack up, using the shelter to get organized. It's a dumpy shelter with holes in the floor, but Blue said it's one of the oldest shelters, and I think it was built by the CCC, so I forgive it. The spring right in front is nice, and so are the campsites, though I did some downhill and sideways sliding last night.
Jelly Bean and Sir Packs a Lot stayed in the shelter, and sometime after I went to my tent I think Candy Cane may have moved to a tent. I don't know, I didn't come out and I still haven't.
I learned a new and better way of bear bagging from Sir Packs a Lot, who is a former thruhiker and now leads paid, guided hikes as a business. Next time I'll do it his way, if I can figure out how. He said it is easier to do it with two people. He also told me where I might try to stay in Fontana Village and how to get the package I shipped ahead. He is also driving a shuttle to Trail Days, which I did not intend to go to, but he thinks we class of 2012 hikers should go. If I help with gas he'll take me and bring me back to where I was. I'm interested and I may go, just to see what it's all about and meet other hikers, current and past. What a cool business he has created for himself.
Oh, the dragging and low energy are explained this morning. It was PMS. Oh Goody.
A really loud and persistent bug is attempting to thwart my netting to get to the light from my phone as I write this. I'm kind of afraid it might succeed. Forget about bears, bugs are causing me much more trouble.
I am tenting outside the shelter, and met a whole new group of hikers. Houdini, Palm Tree, and a couple others I met as they passed through Cold Creek shelter, about noon on their way here. They said Indian Brave is hurting and was at Wayah Shelter last night. Somebody also saw Two Mules and Late Start, who are doing very short days, like I am right now. Mr. Coffee and that group are still coming, too.
I spent over an hour on top of the observation tower on Wesser Bald. There were panoramic views and lovely weather and Houdini was settled in up there. I said, "I'm going to eat up here." He said he had been there for hours. I could see why. It was the best view yet, and hawks of some kind were soaring below us. I had my early dinner (the last of my real food, now I have Snickers and oatmeal to get me to the NOC tomorrow) and a couple came up. They asked questions about my hike and offered me a ride into town for a Margarita for Cinco de Mayo. I wouldn't skip the trail, but I truly appreciated the offer. And now I'm craving Margaritas and Mexican food. I hear there is a restaurant and a bar at or near the NOC. I'm drooling as I write this.
Houdini and the couple left the tower and I stayed a while longer, having a spiritual healing moment. I feel so peaceful inside, calm and whole and loving exactly where I am, doing exactly what I need to be doing. What a beautiful day.