Saturday, November 22, 2008

Thoughts on Our First Full Day

After a 17 hour day where we walked 8 states, I'm now resting comfortably in a Motel 6 in Harrisonburg, VA. Those of you keeping score at home will know that we've already detoured from our meticulous schedule, shifting things around in a way that will help minimize the impact of our early "long" days. To give you an idea, today's 17 hour schedule is not a "long" day.

And still, I'm extremely tired. My legs hurt, my throat is killing me, and I've got some major-league fatigue. [FN 1] Yeah, already. That's what a couple hours of sleep will do when combined with fairly substantial physical strain. I'm sure everybody's going through this--but I also suspect it's hitting me a little harder. But this is what I signed up for, and I've got to take measures necessary to mitigate such problems in the future. The first thing's first: I need to sleep more tonight (which necessarily means I'm going to have to limit this blog post.

Before I cut things off, however, I want to relay a conversation I overheard the others having when we were finally pulling into Harrisonburg. Philip was asking around the minivan what was everybody's favorite state. There were different answers, and each represented a different facet of why this trip has been so great. Dave liked the tiny island in Maine best. There's just something great about struggling to find a mile to walk on a 1000 foot island, all while the pizza we ordered at the island's sole business is being cooked to perfection. Philip preferred our walk in New Jersey, which was located at a town park (Davidson Mill Pond Park) devastatingly off the tourist path. In fact, if it were on a tourist path it would surely disappoint. But being off that well-worn path, it was a revelation. I must be a sucker for sentiment, because my favorite walk so far was the trek across the fields and brambles of the nursery. On one hand it was a little depressing, because in recent years the terrain has changed--dramatically in places--from what I remember in my youth. At the same time, I felt a connection to land I haven't really rambled across in years. I've been talking a lot about how important the concept of "local" is to this trip, and, well, this is my local. It's not just my town, it's my childhood. In a trip of exploration and experimentation, this was my control.

Ok, I really need to hit the switch. A thousand miles of road await tomorrow. Atmore, Alabama, here we come.

[FN 1] BTW that was a completely unintentional use of two consecutive rhyming words ending in "gue." If it was intentional I'd have probably crafted a line decrying "major league intrigue fatigue."

3 comments:

20Tauri said...

Love that main shot of you all. Where is that one from? And as we say back home, bona nit, sleepy teet, don't wake up til the morning neet :)

Gwen Webb said...

Jordi, am eagerly following every new entry and update! Walking one mile in each of eight states in 17 hours must be a record. All the best to you and the argonauts!

Sam said...

Ah, Harrisonburg. Did you experience the unforgettable whiff of the dog food and turkey factories? We've got a saying there: "If it smells like dog food, it's the turkey faculty - and vice versa." Glad to hear that you stopped at the Waffle House. Sunday mornings are the best, with plenty of nervous but friendly Mennonites.