June 6, 2000

Boiling Springs (Mother Hen's), PA 0 Miles Hiked Today 1100 of 2167 Miles Hiked Total

Cruise Control "tomatoes" Shadow's skunkocityWoke up to the sound of pouring rain and decided not to hike, but instead to chill at Mother Hen's. Mother Hen opens her home to hikers by cooking dinner and breakfast, shuttling hikers, letting us spend the night, etc. all for a donation $5.00. She does all of this while raising her three sons without a husband and maintaining a presence at her church.

So we got here at 7:00 am and I spent the day reading, helping Cruise Control wash Shadow (she got sprayed by a skunk), shuttling hikers, cleaning the house, and finally, riding bikes with Mother Hen to the grocery to buy dinner ingredients. The total absurdity of finding myself riding too small a bike down rural Pennsylvania roads in the rain and drizzle to pick up food for 20 hikers was awesome! What a fucking adventure!

Pennsylvania farmlandTomorrow I head to Duncannan and will have to hike 27 miles. For the first time I am going to hike without my pack, taking only a daypack with essentials. Mother Hen will drop my pack off for me at the hotel in Duncannan. I'm not a big proponent of slack-packing, but I want to try it once before I feel I can make an educated decision. I did 28 with my pack, so figure I can do 27 with out it. The first 12 miles are supposedly flat, through farm country.

Almost forgot, yesterday I got the package from Rob that the P.O. lost. In it he sent a bunch of birthday candles, Little Debbie cakes, party napkins, party poppers, and finally a card. In it he reminded me that on his 18th birthday, while we were backpacking and stuck in a tent in the rain, I pulled out cupcakes and candles to celebrate. He hadn't forgotten, told me how cool he thought that was, and told me to celebrate. No wonder he's my best friend.

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