Day 30 (Tape)

Wednesday May 15. I guess starting after the pizza place we were hankering for a dessert of course, and went ah across the parking lot to the Stater Bros store, which closed the doors right in our face. Closed right as we walked over there. We were bummed. Pete made a phone call to Siri, and I took a nap for awhile, inside the entryway to Stater Bros. And then just on a sidewalk outside. I was just in pain. Dead tired. My feet were blistered, I couldn’t walk. And ah, not in too bad of spirits but just in general bad physical shape. And ah, so we eventually went around the corner, out behind the store, into a field. Down in a little kind of ditch where it was dark, or darker. And ah, went to sleep to the music of the trains and the traffic on the highway. And woke up to the same music. I guess there was a really nice sunrise, but I slept through it. And ah, headed to the International House of Pancakes for… International Pancake house? something like that. For breakfast. And, I don’t know, and it might just be the particular places I’ve been, but I’ve never had a really good breakfast at a house of pancakes. Anyplace that’d call itself house of pancakes. And it was a pretty average breakfast, I’d have to say. Got a cheese omelet and pancakes, and that’s all I got. Nothin’ fancy with it. And ah, just ate it down. Headed to the post office and picked up our package, no problem. They even kinda sorted through things a little early for us. Got the new section of the guide book. Ah graciously express mailed to us by Camella. So we have uh, up-to-date guidebook for this section and we actually like know where we are. And when there’s water and that kind of stuff. And ah, I made a few phone calls and got a hold of Camella on the phone. Wished her luck for her surgery that’s coming up on Friday. And ah, trying to get over feelin guilty about not being able to be there with her. As she goes through it, it’s gotta be kind of scary for her. And ah hope it turns out all the best. I’ll be, my curiousities will be running, ah Friday and Saturday. Wondering how she’s doing. Ah, left a message for my mom. She’s back it sounds like. The message has changed, but I didn’t catch her. And ah, got some information from the Pacific Crest Trail Association, since we’re doing all the way to Kennedy Meadows, and we don’t have that part of the guidebook, Val was nice enough to give me the mileages between waters. Water sources on that stretch. And the mileage of the stretch itself. And ah, we walked, it’s quite a distance between the post office and the store-end of town. And we walked there for the morning, and the pancake house was kinda on the post office end of town. So we walked back to the other end of town and uh, did our shopping. I got a new knee brace at Thrifty’s and a new water bottle to replace the one I lost in the dang water hole on the LA aqueduct. And ah, just basically spent a lot of money. And we went grocery shopping, and we just, we’re in some kinda state of mind… and I guess it wasn’t really all that far out but it was kinda far out, and we just bought way too many groceries. Pretty much, we’d been feasting for four days, and enjoying it. And we just, instead of kind of continuing it on maybe the same or a little more moderate level, we just went nuts and decided we had to increase… or just keep things at a every day feast level. And we each had to have our own jar of peanut butter, and we each had to have our own block of cheese, and we each had to have our own loaf of bread, and bagels, and on and on and on. And we each spent $30 to $40 at the grocery store. And packed our packs full full full of heavy food. (laugh) And ah, we’re just kind of on the back swing I guess from still, we didn’t realize, from the starvation period of earlier. And ah, I went and had lunch at subway and Peter had to come get me and borrow $20 because he didn’t even have enough to get all his groceries that he had picked up. And ah, it was just insane. I sat in Subway and packed up my pack, and got all the extra water we would need for this stretch. And ah, packed my pack up and lifted my pack and was just like, Oh My God… What Have We Done? And I put it on and walked over to Stater Bros, and Pete was sorting through all his crap, and he had gotten even more crap than me. And, ha, I went to the bathroom and cleaned up my blisters in the bathroom and kinda did my laundry in there. It was just a public bathroom, people would wander in and see me in the toilet stall like cleaning off my feet with a rag, and like draining blisters in there. (laugh) Or ah, somebody walked in on me while I was washing my filthy shirt in the sink. It was just a general feeling of hoboism and unwelcomeness. And ah, I got it over with as quick as I could, and got out of the store. Packed the pack up again, and Pete packed his pack up and we lifted em, and just started laughin realizing that we were about to pay for our grand ideas. And ah, we could barely even lift our packs out to the road. But we got to the road, and held out our sign, and got a ride pretty quick. I don’t think the guy even read our sign, but ah, we sat there for maybe 10, 15 minutes before we got a ride out, uh, to the trailhead by ah some guy named Robby who was on parole. And ah, seemed to be half-happy and half-sad that we didn’t have a bunch of pot on us. (Pete laughs) Happy that we weren’t going to break his parole and sad that we weren’t gonna get him high out of his mind. But he was a pretty cool guy, and chain smoked while he took us out to the trailhead at Cameron road where we had hitchhiked in the day before. And ah, we got out there, and heaved our packs out of the car. And heaved em up onto our backs. And just started walkin along the trail, wondering how we were ever going to make it. And they are so heavy, the packs are just so heavy. Its hard to describe how much heavier they are, but the feet immediately begin to hurt and the legs ache and we have switchbacks to go up. Endless switchbacks. And we have like, all in all, a couple of thousand feet of elevation to gain. And we start making up funny songs about how stupid we are, and how heavy our packs are. How just ridiculous the whole thing we’re doing is. But we made it up all the switchbacks, and up some more, eventually after a couple of rests and some stretching. And ah, all in all my guess is that we made it in about 6 1/2 miles. And ah, it was still only afternoon, but we decided to camp. And, I needed to screw with the stove, and just relax. I still need to catch up on some sleep from going to bed so late last night. But it, we’re in the mountains again, at least, walking the ridge. And it feels good to be in the mountains, even though we’re gonna run into more windmills tomorrow, and still see the constructs of man, at least we’re up high. Its cool, it clouded over. And ah, looked like it might rain, and it might still. We had, of course, a delicious dinner and plenty of dessert. And ah, I’m feeling pretty good right now, I’m drifting off to sleep even as I record this.

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