See that little dot up there? That’s about exactly where my cursor was last night when I started to write about yesterday. Wanted to tell you all about my first long walk in Tennessee, but was out within seconds, having walked a little over 20 miles, done my laundry, great dinner, packed a box to send on and ease my backpack load and got organized, or as organized as could be. Woke up at three AM, laptop hadn’t budged a centimeter, lights were on and I was watching an infomercial about a butt lifting girdle sort of thing. Might just have to buy one for under me shorts.
The Siege on Tennessee has begun, started yesterday with a beautiful Sunday walk along my old friend Hwy 70.. Got a relatively early start to find quite a contrast from late last week. Lots of different views, from suburban neighborhoods, exurban ranchitos, followed by increasingly rural farms. Lots of trees, and everything very well organized and neat. Given that there were no hotels for 40 miles after leaving Memphis towards Brownsville (TN), I walked a little over 20 miles and my new friend Youssri picked me up and brought me back to the hotel, This morning he took me back out, dropped me near where he picked my up yesterday and I walked on to Brownsville, where I am tonight. We had a couple of very nice conversations along the way.
Beautiful morning today as well. ‘Twas relatively cool, and the first ten miles went by unnoticed. Had a nice little break in Stanton, in cotton country. Went in to the corner store, had a nice chat with the lovely ladies and one gentleman while buying my chocolate milk… yep, it’s become one of my food groups, and none of this 2% stuff… whole chocolate vitamin D enriched 100% fat! Now I’m not advocating you do this every day, but if you’re walking for six hours, you can pretty much eat what you want. But it is nice to have burned calories through some sort of exercise and have that little extra food/calorie buffer to eat something you enjoy.
As I walked out of the little store, I heard the noon church bells! It was so nice, reminded me of my childhood neighborhood hourly peals, and bells in churches in countless Mexican villages and towns, all my life. I later realized the music was actually coming from some loudspeakers, but they sounded great and invoked some very nice memories. It really is the simpler things in life…
And I feel very comfortable in Tennessee. I sense it is a little more common here to see backpackers and hikers, and there are many trails, national parks and forests, and the outdoors is a way of life, so it’s perhaps not as unusual as it is in Texas or Arkansas. Either that or it’s so unusual to see a happy younger aged man walking along, sometimes singing, they say “better leave this guy alone, he’s got to be really weird, better not mess”. And on I go, unscathed.
Have to spend some time on my statistics, as several milestones have come and gone without notice. Crossed a quarter of the way a while ago, just passing through a third, somewhere in the neighborhood of 700 miles, passed 1,000 kilometers a few days ago, well over 1,000,000 steps, And I have to look at the weather stats. It has been unnaturally hot, 16-18 degrees over normal. Today hit 100 again, felt like more with humidity. These 5 weeks may go down as the hottest on record, and here I am, just wondering when it’ll cool down. But I find myself not really thinking about these as much as I used to - they pale in comparison to the experiences behind them!
These aren’t 100% accurate but close…
But I’ll do all that soon, not tonight though. I don’t want to wake up to another blinking cursor and butt-lifting apparatus commercial, so I say goodnight properly… later.