24 days out
“Remember what Bilbo used to say: It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.” – J.R.R. Tolkien
Anticipation has me packing and re-packing my trail bag. Looking up new and lighter alternatives, contemplating tearing sections of my sleeping pad off. Replacing covers for electronics with bubble wrap which I know I will just throw away. Anticipation has me filling up my water bottles and water reservoirs under the pretense of ‘washing them out’ and loading up my bag with all the items and food and water I expect to carry and exclaiming “when did my pack get heavy? !!!”. Anticipation has me pacing around my apartment, with my pack and gaiters on, making circles around my packed-up belongings trying to feel how it will be to go up a hill with the full load. Up a mountain — all the way up to Canada — for five months!
In my anticipation I have my apartment packed up already. I bought five new duffle bags for my clothes and belongings. I needed new ones partially to replace the old and nearly worn through duffle bag my parents gave me years ago which had my initials embroidered on the side, black on black. The other bag I have used in many moves is my Navy sea bag, it developed a rip in the bottom at some point but still works, it has seen it’s share of airports, trunks, car roof travel and more. For some reason it makes me sad to see those old travel companions worn nearly to shreds, showing their age and me being more careful with them instead of just stuffing them full on the way out the door for another adventure.
All this anticipation, just waiting when you have everything ready that you can think of after a year of planning, of dreaming and finally you are on the cusp of that and like the slow clack of the roller coaster creeping up to the launch, you are with bated breath just waiting for the ride to start. In all my moves I have never had this much preparation, this much to worry about for small things going wrong like minor foot or leg injuries or screwing up my resupply and not having maps and socks or going hungry. Or, of hoping that I purchased the right gear after all that research and planning and weight considerations. What if I chose wrong? I also realize these are things that may happen, and I will be okay. I trust myself.
Right now it is like being in-between worlds, one I love and I am comfortable in and the new one steaming madly towards me built entirely of a powerful desire for adventure, and a savage thirst for life.
I am ready to go.