Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Dalton, Mass

Ok, I have to start this off by saying that I just got on a computer at the Dalton Public Library, went to my blogspot, tried to sign in, and was already signed in as the "pokemon master" - someone had forgotten to sign out.  As I started to type my post, a pre-typed drop box menu popped up saying, "Why do you fart?"  Haha, so, no I'm not the pokemon master, although I would like to meet this person, and I guess I fart because I'm gassy?  I Probably fart most of the time because I'm lactose intolerant.  And as I'm sitting here, the librarian is sitting at the computer next to me, with headphones on, laughing hysterically at YouTube. 

I just took my first real shower (real meaning I had shampoo and soap) since Vernon, NJ.  God did it feel amazing.  As I walked into town this afternoon, down Depot St., I walked to a house full of hikers hanging out on the porch.  There were four or five of them, none of which I recognized, but I immediately walked up and felt completely comfortable talking to them.  I sat down on the porch swing and talked about my day and asked questions about Dalton.  I had decided earlier in the day that I would treat myself to a motel room, but these hikers were making this house, owned by a guy named Tom, sound extremely appealing, "Oh, there's a shower here, and you can do a load of laundry, and sleep in a bed, too!"  I talked with them for a good ten minutes before I introduced myself and realized the guy next to me was Tom himself.  He blended in so well with the hiker crowd, that I mistook him for a thru-hiker himself.  Not that he stunk or looked as filthy as I me, but he just had this camaraderie with everyone that was so real and genuine.  He showed me around his house and gave me a bed and a towel for a shower.  He has bikes you can borrow and a change of thrift store clothes to wear while he does your laundry.  What an awesome guy.  I road a bike down to Angelina's Subs and had the best cheese steak I've ever had - cheese, peppers, onions, mushrooms and lots and lots of steak. 

I got lost yesterday, as I took a wrong turn down a different trail, but the trail serendipitously led me down to a town where I was able to continue my soda a day streak.  Three Pepsi's and an ice cream bar fueled me all the way to Upper Goose Pond, making it a 27-mile day - my longest day yet.  I did an easy 20 miles into town today and am staying in my first town since Vernon, NJ, three states ago.  I'm already halfway done with Massacusetts and then I'll be in Vermont!  I've been hiking big miles and not taking any zero days, because I've been in a zone.  The more miles I do, the more my body feels like it wants to do them.  I have become accustomed to hiking long days, and I get antsy if I stop before I'm tired out.  Like the Southbounder, Jason, who did the first third in about a month said, "I'm not trying to go fast, I just enjoy hiking."  I'm enjoying hiking and accomplishing these longer miles day after day, and it gets me closer to my ultimate goal of Katahdin!

Time to ride my bike back to Tom's place.  See you guys soon!


  1. Hi Mike,
    I work in the editorial department at Stackpole Books, a midsize publisher of outdoor and other nonfiction books. We're interested in using a couple of excerpts from your blog in a book of AT stories we're putting together--could you please email me when you see this comment? I'd love to tell you more about the project and see if you're interested.
    Kathryn Fulton
    Editorial Assistant
    Stackpole Books

  2. Mikey Boy - I think you have close to an entire book here yourself! :)

    Keep the engine running buddy boy. FYI I got two tickets to the UGA/USC game when you get home.

  3. Keep it up Mike! Glad to hear that things are getting a lot easier!