On July 5th, 2020, after many plan changes and uncertainty towards what would happen after my departure from Camphill, D (again, initials for some identity disclosure…) came and picked me up in his camper truck named Bernie to embark on the epic adventure of hiking The Long Trail.
Over-sized backpacks are a rookie mistake
Off to Vermont we went, love literally in the air binding us together. After a few days of adventuring, planning logistics, preparing, and a quick "layover" in Massachusetts to buy some recreationally legal weed, we found ourselves walking into the woods on the northern end of The Long Trail as I chanted "into the woods I go to loose my mind and find my soul".
This might be the time to say…
D and I were in Peace Corps together. Holding hands as the plane touched down in Senegal, we were friends from the beginning of service.
<<< This is the road one must take to get to the northern end of The Long Trail!
Before we knew it, we had ventured into and out of Canada and completed our first day (of what turned out to be 33 days) of the hike. We found camp just off the trail with about 1,000+ deer flies buzzing around us to keep us company.
Funny as it seems, that summer in Camphill had challenged me physically more than I ever had been before. Turns out, that was simply a warm up for The Long Trail. Every part of my body ached and the mental endurance I experienced was that of Senegal.
Yet somehow, in all of that, I experienced some of the best parts of my life and rediscovered parts of myself long buried.
I bathed in creeks, kissed newts, heard sasquatch, and literally lived in the forest with a guy I hardly knew but deeply loved.
It was over that time that I decided I was ready for something different - I was ready to compromise and make decisions as a team in the greater interest of Love. We decided to do the dang thing and try our best to do it right - we really wanted it to work. So, I moved into the camper truck with him and we lived on the road, traveling through-out the northeast.
We hiked in the Adirondacks, Catskills, and the White Mountains – all over the place… From New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Virginia – I mean just all over.It was such an exciting and beautiful adventure.
Standing at the river that flows between the border of Maine and Canada, allowing ourselves to feel the disappointment that came with the Canada border being closed down from Covid (and continually pushing that date back), we thought of traveling the entire east coast, all that down to Key West, Florida.
And that’s what we did.
We took the Blue Ridge Parkway for some of the journey south, finding ourselves visiting friends (old Peace Corps Volunteers and farm friends) along the way, walking moss paths leading through the forest on Buddhist Monasteries, and even sitting in CVS parking lots for hours waiting on prescriptions to get rid of some unwanted parasite friends I unfortunately discovered I was hosting.
With a ~2 week stop in North Carolina to see his family, and then a ~2 week stop in Georgia and Florida to see mine, we found ourselves in The Everglades.
Somewhere along the way, we got the idea in our heads to stay a little longer in The Everglades. So, before we knew it, we were living in a bungalow on a small organic farm named Paradise Farms (and truly it was a paradise) in Homestead, Florida for 2 months.
With Love and Light,
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