And we’re off!


This morning I poked my head out of the sleeping bag and saw the sun poking its own fiery self over the horizon. It was the first sunshine we’ve had, and it felt so good, even though I had not slept well. (I am a weenie and chill easily. Note to self: purchase eight or so packs of Hot Hands at next town.)

In the days before, we had weathered, in the following order: fog, rain, thundershowers, snow (my first time hiking in it, though only a quarter inch), blasts of gusty wind for about 24 hours straight, and as a result, blowing snow. It was great. I mean, it partly sucked. But the feeling of beginning our journey was surreal and positive. J.’s parents had dropped us off at the trailhead, up the muddy dirt road, two hours from home. There were lots of photos, and a beautiful guardian angel prayer from J.’s mom, that she had learned from her mother, J.’s Grandma Wise. I was crying from gratitude and love of J.’s parents, and I also felt a very pure joy. I had thought I would be more frightened. We both had nervous stomachs during the drive up. But my butterflies fled the moment my shoes hit the ground.

So: I’m quite tired, but enjoying myself immensely. J. has been dealing with a few aches and pains as we begin, but is enjoying himself immensely too. Now it’s time to head into the woods again. Photos will come soon, I hope.

P.S. Our first “trail angel” was the U.S. Army. They left a camo trailer full of potable water at a road crossing. It sure beat the slushy ice water I had been carrying through the wind and snow.

Forecast at Four

It’s a volatile day in the city

According to our Channel Ten Weathercam

Needy people are rushing from bar to bar

Starting wildfires with their smiling teeth

Generating static with blown-dry hair so take care today

To avoid metal objects such as coins

And knives.

Expect a white hail to fall beneath the pigeon cloud

On 81st Street so cover your convertibles

A delectable southern smog will eclipse Chuck’s Bar B Que

You can brave it but with an allergy index of 172 we recommend ordering in

There will be a cold snap approaching St. Agnes who will respond in kind

And we’ve found a hurricane

So my correspondent in the field can enjoy shouting with painful joy

Or joyous pain over a snaredrum of rain on plastic sheeting

While clinging to a palm tree

Her very favorite way to spend a Friday.

There’s a seventy percent chance of chances.

Beware of drinking straws piercing oranges on your television set during the 4:16 break.

Tonight the moon will be full and so will you

And in approximately an hour I will be far from here

A streak of slick hair flashing from downtown to the suburbs

At approximately 59 miles per hour

A warm front approaching my dogs

A host of tornadoes will spring from their tails and frisk

The area between Interstates 12 and 14

The moondog will chase the sundog but they’ll both stay leashed to their orbits

So hang on to your remote, your brittle perch on this blue marble

And as long as it spins and spins

We’ll be your friends

Here on News Channel Ten.