Hike 2021 Forward – Week 35

Under 360 miles to the finish line! My goal of hiking the year (2,021 miles in 2021) is getting closer. Week 35 of this calendar year ran from August 20 to August 26 (Friday through Thursday). The majority of the weather in Springboro, Ohio, was warm and dry enabling me to walk 54 miles during this seven-day period. Since January 1, 2021, I have accumulated just over 1664 miles.

I have thoroughly enjoyed this challenge so far. The daily walks have been physically and emotionally. Breathing fresh air and soaking in some sunshine energizes my mind and my spirit. I believe walking (especially a hike in the woods) is a total person workout. The sounds of the forest are soothing and the quiet of the path provides time for reflection, innovative thinking, and personal prayer.

The Fiber Optics, Gas-line, hole-digging guy knocked on my door this week and let me know that they needed to connect my home to the new gas service. And presto-chango – my front yard received several new piercings. After a day of painful digging, the hole-digging guy came back to the door and connected me to my brand-new service. He left my house with a pleasant smile and a Hi-Ho Silver. The next day my wife commented that she had no hot water. I called the hole-digging guy – answering machine. I walked the neighborhood looking for a hole-digging crew – they don’t work on Fridays (or Saturdays, or Sundays). Today is Monday and it is supposed to rain all day – I am hoping that the hole-digging guy works in the rain, but I am not holding my breath. Washing the dishes, the clothes, and the body in cold water is not ideal, but then I think about the many people who don’t have enough clean cold water to drink, don’t have indoor plumbing, don’t have a washing machine, don’t have enough food to fill their plates. I just have to be patient…., but a hot shower is going to feel great!

Back to the walks. I had a short but nice walk in the woods. When one is hiking in the blazing hot sun, the canopy feels great. The trees form this cool umbrella that lowers the air temperature several degrees and blocks the pounding heat of the sun with welcomed shade. The only downside is the web-walking experience. The spiders do an incredible job of setting traps in such a way that I can’t see them until I have walked right into them.  Most of the time others have web-walked for me and the path is clear, but there have been a few times when I have provided that service for those who came behind me.

It looks like a wet week ahead, but as they say on the Appalachian Trail, “No Pain, No Rain, No Maine.” I have nice rain gear in my closet waiting to be called into action.            

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