I’m Going to Katahdin
Hiking the Appalachian Trail offered something that my daily life often did not: time. Time to slow down, look inward, enjoy a leisurely lunch, catch a sunrise if I felt so inclined, or sleep in if my body needed to recover. I had nowhere to be and all day to get there. In short, it was a beautiful life.
But I’ll be honest: sometimes it was just, well, too much time.
After I’d had about all I could stand of my own thoughts, I often took refuge in the company of others.
Without a To Do list dictating our days, we filled hours with ridiculous games and songs. These were usually relics from childhood – a testament to the last time we’d all had time to kill.
A go-to game with our crew became a variation of “I’m Going on A Picnic.” The rules were simple: the hiker at the head of the line picked a destination in place of a picnic (e.g. “I’m going to Trail Days,” or, “I’m going to Gatlinburg.”) and “brought” something beginning with the letter A (e.g. apples). The next hiker repeated A, then added an item beginning with B. The following hiker repeated A, B, added C, and so on, until we’d reached the letter Z.
Flying back and forth across the country this week, I found myself with the gift of time once more. My mind drifted into a state of trail nostalgia, as it often does, and I found myself playing a solo round of, “I’m Going to Katahdin.”
I’m going to Katahdin and I’m bringing…
Baby wipes & bourbon
Crocs & crusty clothing
Duct tape & Darn Tough socks
Egg rolls from Ming’s
Heat rash & Hot Hands
Injuries & inclement weather
Lyme Disease & Little Debbie snacks
Peanut butter & Pasta Sides
Quality Inn continental breakfast
Sawyer Squeeze & Snickers
Umbrellas & ukuleles
Wild ponies & turkeys
What are you bringing to Katahdin?
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