Since I always try to start the week out with a shared chuckle or two, I didn’t want to let my readers down this morning. At the same time, I didn’t get home until yesterday evening, so I really didn’t have time to go trolling for humorous news stories. However, I think I shall relate some parts of my weekend adventures which may prove to be at least as humorous as anything in last week’s news, as far as I can tell.
I had a great weekend, enjoyed it immensely, but there were several points that, in retrospect were quite comical. First, I am a consummate list-maker. I make lists for everything! If it isn’t on a list, it will almost certainly be forgotten. That said, I had two lists for this trip: a ‘to-do’ list and a ‘to-pack’ list. I double-checked the packing list three times, checked everything off all three times … yep, I had everything I could need for a week, even though I would only be gone three days (I am, after all, a woman). Miraculously, I also got every single thing done on my ‘to-do’ list! So, I was ready to begin my journey of 1,000 steps (or about 300 miles). I hugged Goose (my granddaughter), and started up the interstate. After about 9 miles, it hit me like a bolt of lightning … I forgot to bring money and credit cards! I had not one red cent on my person! I had to drive another 5 miles to the next exit, go back home, get money, and start over again. That cost me 45 minutes and I was on a close schedule anyway, but I was just thankful I made this discovery when I did instead of halfway through the trip!
Finally on my way, and it was a beautiful day, the sky was blue and the sun was shining! Found decent music on the radio. And then it started to get cloudy. And cloudier. And then, the sky opened up and, being visually challenged anyway, I could not see a thing, I was just trying to follow the taillights of the car in front of me. Then it started to get darker and I still could not see a thing, and so it was that I didn’t see the sign for the exit I was to take. Some 30 miles later, I wondered why I had not come to the toll booths that were there the last time I made this journey … it did seem that I should have come to them by that point. But alas, I hadn’t come to them because I had missed my turn way back there, but I didn’t yet realize that. I eventually got off at what I thought was the correct exit, but ended up, after nearly an hour, on a farm road made of dirt. I’ll skip the details of the next two hours, but suffice it to say that I was lost … very lost! I, being a woman and not a man, stopped and asked directions. Not once, mind you, but three times! I did finally find my destination. By that time, my friend H had called on my cell phone to ask where I was, and the only answer I could give him was “I have no idea”. When I finally arrived, a big hug wiped away most of the stress of the evening, and a piece of pizza and glass of Bailey’s Irish Cream took care of the rest.
The next day, the day of our planned 5-mile hike, it was still raining. Now, a little background here. H is a seasoned hiker … he has hiked almost half of the Appalachian Trail, and has a couple of thousand miles of hiking to his credit. I am not a hiker. I have hiked very short, 1-2 miles at a time, trails in the Smokies … when I was less than half the age I am now! But, I was psyched to be going on this hike, we had planned it for months, and we were not about to let a little rain slow us down. The trail was, H assured me, an easy trail, with few rocks and very few minor hills. Well, let me tell you … “easy” is a relative term. At the beginning, he said it would probably only take him an hour and a half, but since I am inexperienced, it might take us two hours! I laughed and jokingly said “more like 5 hours!” Prophetic.
Remember, it is raining. H gave me his windbreaker with a hood, and off we went. I was doing well … the terrain was, in my opinion, rocky, but not too steep … nothing I couldn’t handle. H would hike ahead (he’s 6’2”, so his legs are longer!) and wait for me, then I would catch up (eventually) and he would move ahead again. After what I thought had to be at least a couple of miles, I was puffing and panting, when I next caught up with him and he was standing at the mile marker showing we had gone one mile. Yes, one mile. In one hour. Still, I thought I had done pretty well and was mentally patting myself on the back, when H said “You’re going to need to pick it up a bit. It shouldn’t take an hour to go one mile.” He still doesn’t realize how close he came to getting his patoot kicked! But suffice it to say he would soon realize that it wasn’t the best thing he could have said!
Next mile was more eventful! It was still raining, sometimes just a drizzle, sometimes a harder rain. I think I was still ruminating over the “pick it up” remark and perhaps not paying quite as much attention as I ought to have, when I tripped over a rock. I didn’t actually fall all the way to the ground, as my hiking poles kept me upright, but the side of my right foot made some heavy-duty contact with said rock and I was hobbling after that. Then, some little ways further, I tripped over another rock and this time landed SPLAT on my butt in the mud! A few choice words … a few tears (or were those just rain drops?), and then I picked my muddy self up and moved on. By this time, I had not seen H for a while, but finally came to him waiting at the 2nd mile marker. WHAT???? Only two miles? It truly felt like 15! In my mind, I was saying “puff, puff, puff … I can’t do this …. I can’t do this”, but I am a stubborn sort and I wasn’t going to say that to him! So, we embarked on the next mile, during which I fell flat on my butt 3 more times! When I finally caught up to him at the third mile marker, we had been hiking for three hours and when I told him how many times I had fallen he vowed not to let me out of his sight again, and also told me to “stop falling … you could hurt yourself!” Still hobbling, by the way, but the foot didn’t really hurt all that much. Or perhaps it was just relative to all else, it seemed like a minor detail. By this time, I was soaked, all three layers of my clothing were soaked, my shoes were soaked inside and out … making a squish-squelch sound with every step, so what’s a little foot pain, right?
The final two miles were relatively uneventful, H had words of encouragement, assured me that I was not going to have a heart attack, and we took a few short breaks, which helped. The bottom line … I DID IT! I hiked a full 5 miles without giving up! I am proud of my accomplishment, though not too proud of being a whining wimp. And it took us almost exactly 5 hours, give or take 5 minutes! As a result, H has re-evaluated our next hike, deciding that perhaps I am not quite ready for a full 5 miles just yet.
We got back to our motel room, and preparing to take a shower, I removed my dripping socks from my frozen feet … and … remember the foot I hurt? It was not a pretty sight! About a 6” oval bruise, which later expanded to the whole top of the foot and part of the bottom. We think some small bone is probably fractured, but oh well … it will heal! The rest of the trip was without incident. We went out to dinner after showering and donning dry clothing, then sat up talking about … yeah, Trump came into play there … everything and anything! Today, my trip home was uneventful … no missed exits or wrong turns. All in all, I had a wonderful time! Never mind that my foot is probably broken and my body has many aches and bruises! I had a great weekend! I arrived home to a number of messages that I had missed the “great Trump bomb”, and “what were you thinking, going away at a time like this?” So, I will try to catch up on all that in the next post or two. Meanwhile, I hope you got a bit of a chuckle from my misadventures … I certainly did … in fact, I am still chuckling!
P.S. – We had originally planned on camping at least one night, but it was just too cold and wet, so we opted for the creature comforts of a soft bed in a heated motel room.