Meanwhile…back in Virginia on the AT…
Posted on June 18, 2013 by The Man in My Shoes
Princess here…This morning I was driving through Buena Vista (which in these parts is pronounced like Buena rhymes with tuna) and as I passed the Budget Inn I saw two guys with backpacks hitch-hiking. Instinctively thinking they were thru-hikers, I pulled over and asked where they were headed. They were going to Long Mountain Wayside, a place I know well from training hikes Walker and I did last summer in preparation for El Camino de Santiago. I gave them a ride there. As they got in our Prius, they commented that it was strange to be getting in an efficient car and not a pickup truck. They started from Springer Mountain on March 31 (Walker started March 27). They were impressed at how far he is! Their trail names are Smiles and Zach Galifianakis (I had to Google that, but he looks just like an actor by that name). Unfortunately, when they stopped at Long Mountain Wayside yesterday, they put their poles on a picnic table while waiting for a ride and inadvertently left them there. Although Zach got a ride back there as soon as they realized it, their poles were gone. Three hundred dollars worth. They were quite bummed, especially as this morning’s hike involved quite a climb, but they planned to find limbs and use them as poles.
They were grateful for the ride and told me about one of their trail friends named Greenlight who was back at the Budget Inn with First Gear, Danger Pants, Oz, Turreto, and Limey. Greenlight has not been feeling well and was planning to go to the hospital this morning. They gave me his room number, and on the way back I stopped at the Budget Inn to see if I could be of any assistance. I knocked on their door, and I think (due to his accent) that it was Limey who answered; he said they had already gone to the hospital. I hope all turned out well for him, but if their suspicion that he has Lyme disease is correct, it could be a problem.
Some of my friends think it was a bit reckless stupid to pick up hitchhikers, but I just trusted my gut. I’m glad it turned out like it did!