We had to do 26km today to get to a road where we had access into Rutland – we needed to be at the post office before closing time at 5pm to pick up our cable.
On our route we came across this farm boundary with implements placed on the wall remnants:
We also passed this rock garden near the top of a hill, many hikers must have had more energy than I had as there were many works of art:
We crossed a stream by walking over a log positioned to form a bridge. I was in front. Trevor said afterwards he was surprised how casually I strolled over the log. However, with only 3 or 4 more steps to go I lost my balance. Addrenaline is an amazing thing. As I started tumbling I knew I had to land carefully or there could be a problem. Instead of just falling I launched into a little jump to the right and looked for the best position to land with my feet to not hurt anything. My shoes and socks were wet but other than that no harm done! And I gave Trevor a bit of a scare.
We got off the trail by 2h30 this afternoon. Somebody was doing trail magic (cold drinks) in the parking lot; it was a guy who just finished the Long Trail (LT).
The LT is about 270 miles and existed long before the AT. The LT actually gave McKay the idea for the AT. For 105 miles the trails run together, tomorrow we will head East while the LT will continue North and end at the Canadian border.
We tried to hitch a ride but wasn’t as lucky as yesterday and after about 15mins the trail magic guy offered to bring us into town.
Though there is what seems a very interesting hostel in town, we opted for a more conventional motel. We sort of regretted it as the hostel sounds an experience (in downtown, run by a group of alternative thinking dudes, it’s free you can give a donation, and they feed you rice&eggs for breakfast) but the aim of this visit was to get our cable from the post office and get back to the trail. We (😀) didn’t spend too much time investigating options and didn’t want the burden of having to walk around town with backpacks hoping to find accommodation.
The motel is 2km from the post office – we walked down in sweltering heat, making us realise how much protection the trees give us when we are on the trail. A woman waiting at a traffic light opened her window, leaned out and shouted at me that she likes my pants (long tie-died leggings I bought in Harpers Ferry to wear into Washington DC, weighing nothing and taking no space and now my town pants).
After picking up the cable (order something from Amazon and have it in less than 48hours: even if the delivery address is the post office….and the post office itself is also unbelievable) we had dinner, picked up a few food items for the next 4 days (a worker at Walmart asked me where I’m from, surprised that it’s from SA he asked what I’m doing here, when I said doing the AT he said pardon me but may I ask your age…..Trevor loved that!….clearly this guy thought I’m too old for thus 😀) and walked back (in now much cooler conditions) to the motel.
Some of the buildings in downtown:
From old farm walls to rock gardens to town buildings, I think I would have loved to be an architect. I get so much joy out of all these different builders’ work.
But….here is the best. I unfortunately didn’t see this myself but when we stayed over at Iceman and Barb, and drove around in the countryside where many Amish were farming, Iceman told us about “Raising the Barn” : when the Amish community in an area get together to build a new barn. When they came to do trail magic for us last week he showed us these photos of a barn being built outside their town, the first photo was taken in the morning and the next one late afternoon:
Tomorrow we will be transported back to the trail at 7am. Our next town shop, if all goes according to plan, will be Hanover in New Hampshire in 4 days time.