On to Damascus

Day 45 on the trail. 

Today is my 41st AA birthday.   Leah made me a heart rock with 41 on it and gave me a rice crispy bar.  I read “Why we were chosen” to them and, of course,  got a little emotional. We were sitting on the bank of a mountain river, it could not have been more serene.  I am so grateful for this life I have been given through the program of Alcoholics Anonymous. 

I only hope I remember today when a “I want to quit the Trail day comes”

Today was another absolutely gorgeous day.  As we got a ride

 to the trail from Station 19 Hostel, the owner said the worst of the mountains are now behind us.  He also said that now the trail just meanders from here to Virginia.  After today I might just start believing.


The Trail took us by several phenomenal waterfalls.  I could have stayed all day at them.  Right now I am in my tent listening to a brook flowing just 5 feet from me.  People spend all kinds of money to be put to sleep by sounds like this.

Today also marked my reaching 400 miles on the Trail.  It doesn’t seem possible.  

One of my sayings I repeat too much, of course, besides “Shirley ” is, “Life is good “.  You can only imagine the smile on my face when I came upon these “three Grandma’s ” all wearing “life is good tee-shirts”.  So I immediately thought,  ” what would it take to have one of your tee-shirts”.  Almost as quickly I thought that sounds inappropriate.   So I said just that.   They laughed not knowing how my mind works, and said,”go ahead “, so I did, they laughed and said,” nobody wants to see what is underneath these shirts”.  I did get the place they ordered them from though.

Reality of the Trail 

I am saddened to learn of several people I have hiked with who have, for one reason or another, decided to depart the quest.   

Forest Creatures

I was lucky enough to be allowed to peek in on some of the little people of the forest today. 

Day 46



I left our campsite this morning and the trail took me for quite a while along the stream.  The woods were so still I swear I could hear my heartbeat. The silence was only broken by a few warblers, I believe, calling for a sweetheart. The only other sound was the thump thump of my poles on the trail.  The sound, to me, of the heartbeat of the Trail.

Lord of the Rings

Here is a picture skirting a rock face and the river. Super cool!  Doesn’t it remind you of Lord of the Rings?


What is the Trail?

I have decided,  after much time to contemplate such things, that the Trail is feminine.   For example,  the trail shows only what she wants you to see.  You always know there is something more you want to see but it is all on her time. 

The Trail is always on your mind.   Always calling to you.  Calling to see what is around the soft curve ahead.  Promising a delight, for sure. 

Sometimes the trail is all soft, smooth curves like a woman’s thigh.  Sometimes it is like a woman’s tongue, walking on a narrow ridge with the wind trying to rip you from your grip on the trail. 

So here’s to all the Women everywhere and most of all to the trail,  for making this beautiful world interesting and worth looking forward to. Looking forward to whatever is around the next bend.



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Comments 2

  • Jack D : Apr 25th

    Thrilled to see another friend of Bill W. enjoying Nature’s Serenity. Congratulations on reaching 41 years of sobriety, one day at a time and one step at a time. In 5 years, I pray that I will also proudly celebrate 41 years.

    Life is Good…the T-shirt logos are accurate.


    • HurricaneRena : May 2nd

      Thank you for sharing your journey, Goat! I love your unique trail story, and it’s a privilege to be taken along the adventure with you. Will be looking out for you and your hearts in NJ!


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