The following passages have been taken from a journal entry I had written on scrap paper and in my actual journal from 2015, shortly after we left the Appalachian Trail. The only date I seem to have recorded was the date in the title August 4, 2015. The entries you’ll read are over the span of three and a half weeks post trail. Some of my thoughts from then are a little on the dark side, but I felt they still should be shared. –Snuggles
We are off trail. It was so sickenly easy once we made the decision. We can hardly look at each other without crying. I can’t believe this. Why was it so easy to leave it? I hated it so much at times I wished for this but I’m so in love with it too. Why does it hurt so much? Why did it betray us?
Everything is a blur.
Two Days Off Trail:
My grandmother is dead. I watched as the color Gray took her over and then she was gone. We found solace with our friends whom we have been staying with since returning; we felt tucked away from the whirl-wind of family and old friends. Our days are now filled with meaningless possessions as we numbly clean out our mini storage. I feel overwhelmed and disgusting as we rummage through all this junk we held at one time so dear.
Bowie won’t look at us. I thought she would save me somehow, but she only rejects us. My own dog has forgotten me.
I’ll never see my grandmother again.
Three Weeks Off Trail:
We were ever really there? It seems so far away.
Occasionally I seem to have flashbacks of my tramily and places, things that I saw and things I experienced. Is any of it still out there? Where are my friends at now? I wonder how Darwin feels, but I am afraid to ask. He seems more distraught then I do. Overcome with loss of Mamaw and loss of the trail, he is now dealing with the physical pain of his now infected tooth and left over lethargy from the tick bite that started us on this downward spiral. I wonder where Roub is…
We finally left our hometown heading back out west, leaving my family in a confused state of being. I havent cried, I can’t, I’m empty. Things move to fast off trail. Oh shit, we left the trail…
As we drive further away we seem to feel some small sense of peace return. It is just us again. Bowie was also started to turn back into her old self. She didn’t get one walk while we were gone. I betrayed her…
We are in Kansas now. Five miles from our campsite destination the Black Stallion puttered to a stop and died on I-70. It’s given up on life; some kind of fluid was spurting everywhere like blood from a cut artery. It’s was difficult to watch. I turned instead and watched the sun melt into the horizon while waiting for the tow truck. I wonder if my friends from the trail are watching it too. I am glad they can’t see me now. I feel hollow again…
This morning I woke with a headache confused about where I was. Oh, the Stallion died, like my life on the trail, like Mamaw. We were taken to a lonely motel last night by the tow truck to some little town we would have never known about before. The same people who own the tow company run the body shop, these are the same people who also own this hotel. Funny. I sit outside our door and watch all the tenants from last night moving on. We moved North every day before, now everyone is moving around us and we stay. I walk around the building and find empty fields on one side and a forgotten neighborhood on the other…
We eat food from a mail-drop Mom sent to us but had returned. I was supposed to eat this on the trail not here…
For four months I had direction. I was always heading North and Katahdin was my goal. Now my direction is West…maybe…and I have no other goals. This motel resembles how I feel: a lost place, outdated, trying to compete in a world far advanced, everything is moving around it.
What am I doing? Where are we going?
(One Of The Only Pictures Taken During Our Stay At The Kansas Motel)
Things To Expect In Up Coming Blog Posts/Website Posts And Other Doings:
Delayed Discovery of a Fellow AT Hiker’s Website: The Ministry of Happiness Led By Rev. Kane. We met briefly on the trail in 2015, a good man with an interesting perspective! (He also shared Raspberry Cookies with me too!) Check Him Out!
Girl Overnight Backpacking Trip – Officially on the back burner, literally! In the 100s here in ABQ. We will wait a bit then try to hit the trail again.
Book Review: “The Long Shadowed Forest” by Helen Hoover – In Progress
??? Skirt Testing: In Progress and going good! I’m really liking it so far and can’t wait to share more!
Check Out Our Etsy Store TravelandTrail – Full of Fun Travel Finds!