In the past 24 hours, everything to make this dream feel “real” has happened for me. In a flurry of emails and date-checking and flight searches, I’ve arranged for the cottage in Amicalola Falls the night before I leave, my Dad came in with the rental car, and…drumroll…I bought my one-way flight to Atlanta.
Oh. My. God.
Some of this happened while at work, and all at once. And there was a moment, sitting at my desk, when I could barely handle it, barely focus on anything but this reality. Total, pure joy. It is happening. It’s hard to even put into words.
I’d realized this week that I had to get a place to stay the night before – people on forums and boards were already talking about it, and my mid-March leave date is a popular time. With suggestions from my dad and from guidebooks, I picked a place and got us a cute little cottage. With my dad coming to see me off, certain logistics are made easier: since he got the rental car, we can drive from ATL to Amicalola, and then in the morning, check in at the park and then skip most of the approach trail, through a series of winding roads. We can take the Benton MacKaye Trail 1.5 miles to Springer – and from there I am on my own.
Once the cottage was settled, there was no reason not to lock in a flight at a cheap rate. I browsed for a couple that fit in with the time Dad was arriving from a conference in Florida. I don’t really do one-ways, so it was a strange realization to make – that I wouldn’t need a round-trip. Then everything began to play out in my head: putting my pack in the hands of the airline, carrying on little more than some extra clothes for Georgia and perhaps my camera and a book, and…and…and….nothing. I will be walking home.
I am so happy!
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