Wednesday, July 1, 2015

July, Happy Birthday month

28 Jul, Tues: We hiked to the ski run very slowly and moderately taking a lot of time to rest. Plans have changed. We will not be able to spend the rest of the summer in Killington. We are packing tonight through Thursday, leaving boxes and the motorcycle stored with Pat until fall, departing by 5:00 AM on Friday to the Rutland airport for the puddle jumper flight to Boston Logan Airport for a connecting flight to Houston. The temperatures in Houston are horribly hot.
27 Jul, Mon: Regardless of good intentions we don't get out the door early to beat the heat. At 11:00 AM we were off and moving (slowly) up the Sherburne Pass Trail to the sinkholes and return for a short two hour hike. Ron's trail maintenance is looking good. Cynthia had PT and learned two new exercises. Dinner at Southside Steakhouse was interesting: the mashed potatoes had no fat. A deer ran across the road in front of us.
26 Jul, Sun: Hot, humid and sticky, icky sweaty. Despite the heat we hiked to the meadow and back by 3:00 PM just in time to shower and dine in Killington at Choice's.
25 Jul, Sat: We went shopping! Our morning was spent in Rutland buying necessities and two tools. We ate a moderate lunch at Sugar and Spice before hurrying back to hike at a more measured pace up the Sherburne Pass Trail. We have needed to rest more often while hiking. We meet so many interesting hikers on the trail and at the Inn, I think I surely will remember their names and stories to add to the blog, but I don't.
24 Jul, Fri: The temperature reached a high of 71 degrees, very few bugs were bothering us on the five miles to the ski run. Thank you to John and Kelly, a delightful, fun, couple for joining us at Choice's Restaurant in Killington, VT for dinner. (2)
23 Jul, Thurs: An early morning appointment with the dentist was followed by shopping until the saddlebags were filled. In the afternoon we hiked to the sinkholes and back feeling quite worn out. Ron rode the bike to the AT trailhead on Route 4 to cut try to remove a tree fallen across the trail. After lopping off a large branch the tree was still immovable. What a marvelous surprise when Trillium and her husband John walked into the Inn. They were in this area to see their daughter at camp and made special plans to visit us.
22Jul, Wed: The weather has been gloriously cool. We hiked five miles to the meadows.
21 Jul, Tues: We haven't hiked up to Deer Leap and onto the Long Trail Northbound this summer until today. The first half mile of rocky trail re-shaped by Hurricane Irene was as hazardous as we remembered. Showers were forecast at one PM and another at five PM; at noon thirty rain fell for thirty minutes or so, but after donning our ponchos we sallied forth through the mud onto a very poorly maintained Long Trail. Ron hiked on past several streams while Cynthia turned back. Our laundry soap was put to good use.
20 Jul, Mon: Sore and tired muscles moved much slower this morning. The gorgeous weather beckoned and we responded to the lure with a 4.6 mile hike round trip to River Road. Thundering Falls had a lot of water. Less elevation gain.
19 Jul, Sun: OhMyGoodness!!! We are very proud of ourselves after hiking eight miles (heading W on Route 4 to the AT southbound trail) up to Jungle Junction, and then down Sherburne Pass Trail. Ron worked very hard on trail maintenance. The sky darkened, rain drops fell and Cynthia bounded down the mountain so fast the poncho carrying Ron could not catch her. Breathing issues.
18 Jul, Sat: We hiked five miles round trip to the ski run where we were surprised and delighted to see our new friend Jeff from Austin, TX; he snapped the photo of us sweaty, but happy (above).
17 Jul, Fri: Six mile hike to Pico Peak; dinner at Choice's Restaurant in Killington. First day of breathing issues.
16 Jul: Ta DA!! It is birthday time! Cynthia was treated to a shot of cortisone for bursitis in her IT band in the hip. She took a Girl Day at the Spa while Ron hiked and painted white blazes. She loves her fleurs. Ron hiked to Coopers Lodge, painted white blazes, sawed trees, and became very tired after an eight hour hike without food.
15 Jul: More trail magic: We bought breakfast for AT thru-hikers Lightning, PorkChop, and TicToc, all of whom started early in April (2nd, 3rd, 4th). Two of the three are Thrus in disguise; his hair is short, her hair looks marvelous. Only PorkChop looks the part. James Lea resumption will be satisfying because the notes outlining next steps are very thorough. We over ate today leaving Ron with a lot of stomach distress. He hiked four hours after we returned to the Inn from physical therapy.
14 Jul: It looks to be a gorgeous day for a Great Hike, and so it was! We bought breakfast again for Obiwan and SmokeBreak, poor guys had to listen to ten minutes of "Ride like Ron" philosophies. We started hiking a bit late, 12:48, and hiked industriously up to the ski run, 2.5 miles. Each review of Volume 6 uncovers more and more problems needing work.

13 Jul: We bought breakfast for Obiwan, SmokeBreak and Feris, AT thtu-hikers who are also hiking the Long Trail as a bonus addition. Obiwan is a physical therapist who told Cynthia that a cortisone injection is NOT a sustainable "cure" for any problem, but rather "cures" the pain, allowing a window of pain-free opportunity to do the exercises needed to ACTUALLY effect a cure as much as possible. Lunch at Sugar and Spice was a double treat: we met Jeff from Austin, TX who joined us for our early lunch and fun conversation about hiking and camping. Today's physical therapy with Maureen was scheduled for 1PM. Afterwards we shopped for groceries, and Ron brought two bouquets of beautiful fleurs to surprise Cynthia!! Happy Birthday Sweetie ... month, actual date is 3 days hence. Ron's felt a bit bloated and uncomfortable, and his hands are still not free from pain, so he hiked up to the ski run without attempting trail maintenance. Strange that he didn't realize that the discomfort in his hands could be related to the absence of the Glucosamine and Chondroitin that he usually takes twice daily. Ron is finally done with Desktop Tragedy restoration and is becoming motivated to resume James Lea and Volume 6.

12 Jul, Sun: Trinity Lutheran Church is next door to the Crosby House, so we weren't late for worship. It is always a marvelous feeling to be "home" in our father's house!! Immediately after church we began the ride to Killington. Because of the sun and heat and recent rains, the corn looked like it grew two feet. Really!! We arrive in Hanover, NH in time for brunch on the patio at the Hanover Inn, across from Dartmouth Campus. Despite a temperature of 89 degrees, we enjoyed a nice breeze and watching a sweet young thing with interesting head gear of a plastic bag filled with ice. It did indeed look like a hat with transparent tail. Over dinner at the Inn at Long Trail, we met AT hikers Obiwan, SmokeBreak, and Faris.11Jul: We did indeed appreciate the ambiance of the Crosby House. Breakfast was delicious. Rachel, our hostess, is quite delightful. The ride to Keene was very pleasant and quick although we did stop at a Hannover's grocery to buy some bread, pretzels and protein bars for lunch. It was wonderfully pleasant to spend the day with Beanie and Eddie. (Ed is resuming running and training and has discontinued memorizing Scrabble words after achieving a high ranking in state tournaments.) They drove us past their newly purchased home; move-in will happen in two weeks. Pappagallos Restaurant did a good job of feeding us. 10 Jul: The temperature was chilly as we began the day's ride from Killington to Brattleboro, Vt. for the weekend. Once we reached a lower altitude, it was hot. We rode directly east on U.S. 4 into New Hampshire where Ron soon stopped to remove the accursed (because mandatory) helmet. (He has taken to telling people that he believes that helmets CAUSE accidents, due to fatigue, overheating, substantial diminishment of sight and sound.) The pleasant journey through iconic New England villages was like being in a movie (on NH highways 120, 12A, and 63). We were delighted to travel amongst picturesque white church steeples rising into the blue sky, green fields and forests dotted with red barns and an occasional covered bridge, shimmering lakes, rivers, and rippling creeks. We arrived in Brattleboro, VT about 4PM to check into the Crosby House B and B before meeting Eddie, Beanie, B.D. And Drew at Luca's Italian Restaurant in Keene, NH.9 Jul: This is the weekend we have to vacate our room because it was previously booked. We spent all morning cleaning and packing up to store our boxes in Pat's car. After a nice lunch we hiked to the sink holes, returned to finish laundry and packing. 8 Jul: We did make it to physical therapy, the bakery, market and on to Sugar and Spice for lunch. When we returned we had time and energy for a hour hike starting at three PM. 7 Jul: We had great plans for a big hike but the rain started at noon. We worked on computers. 6 Jul: Ouch!!! Cynthia's physical therapy days were changed. We missed it. We took the bus to Killington and the Gondola to the peak to hike down mountain to the Inn. It was a terrific six mile hike; Cynthia was able to see the large trees Ron moved off the trail. 5 July, Sun: Hiked to Jungle Junction plus for a great seven mile trek. 4 July: Have a safe and Happy Fourth of July remembering to be thankful for the joy of living in this marvelous country blessed with freedom. 3 Jul: Cool temperatures make glorious hiking weather. Today's pleasant seven mile hike took six hours. It is good to see the trail drying up in most areas. Cynthia was astonished to meet four AT hikers at breakfast who have been slack packing the entire A.T., spending nights at hotels and B and B's. Evidently they arranged shuttles ahead of time. This, being a holiday weekend, most people on the trail today were day or weekend hikers. A family of "new WalMart hiking poles" was celebrating the ten year olds birthday. Two A.T. Hikers showed up at Jungle Junction looking like the real thing: thru-hikers! We drove to Choices Restaurant in Killington for dinner and experienced an hour wait and conversation with some Iowans. The food is always good. The ride home was chilly enough we turned the fireplace on briefly. 2 Jul: We arrived at the bakery in Rutland in time to buy several loaves of fat free bread, visit Tops Market and still reach the physical therapist on time. Our good fortune in timing held allowing us to arrive five minutes before closing at Sugar and Spice for lunch and get back to the Inn to have a two hour hike. Whew!!! 1 Jul: Happy Birthday to my beloved WeeFee, SmoochSmooch (and as she frequently reminds me, her name IS CYNTHIA). The month started wonderfully well; the female half of the congenial foursome at the next breakfast table raved about our beautiful 17th century wedding pictures. Ron enjoyed meeting AT hiker FurBall and her mom at breakfast. FurBall is hiking with dog and hiked for 24 hours (almost) yesterday to "celebrate" her birthday. She plans to sleep a lot today.