Pittsburg to Pittsburg Day 1 continued.
It was only 4 in the afternoon and even though Griffin was fast asleep it was far too early for me to do so. Instead I washed our clothes in the shower using the soaps so generously provided and set them up to dry on the hooks by the front door. I gazed at the lake view outside our window again, marveled at the cute decorations and then went to my bedroom to put my feet up.
I should probably rest, I thought.
At the last minute when deciding what to pack for our trip I had decided not to bring a book and instead packed an old issue of Alfred Hitchcock magazine that I had found at a local Savers. I remembered reading them when young and thought it might be fun to go through an old issue again.
My initial plans for this hike were to read only New Hampshire authors and like a modern Pied Piper of literature I had planned to release my finished books into the wild, hoping that someone else would catch and appreciate them. Realizing now that that particular plan would have added at least 3 pounds to my already ridiculously heavy pack, I congratulated myself in the decision to carry only a lightweight magazine.
Anyway, I could always buy a book when we passed a local bookstore.
I settled down to read the first story which proved to be just as enjoyable as I had remembered with its plot twist at the end. I’ll have to tell this story to Griffin I thought. How very clever it was of me to take this publication after all.
When our kids were little and it was naptime. I never said that they had to go to sleep (something any toddler would rebel against) instead I always told that they didn’t have to go to sleep, they only had to rest their eyes. Giving the child the choice of what to do empowered them, they never fought and they would always be asleep within minutes. Win-win.
Apparently forgetting this sage parental advice and thinking that I would just rest my sunburned eyes for a bit, I woke 2 hours later when I heard Griffin stirring.
Our bodies ached, our feet pounded but we had to do something about getting dinner. In the pamphlets left in the cabin we read that there was a local steak restaurant just half a mile up the street. With no other option we laced our shoes up, determined to have a nice sit-down dinner and set out to the steak house.
Which was down a steep hill and then up another. You’d be surprised at how many inclines and declines can be fit into one half mile, let me assure you that northern New Hampshire has turned this very skill into an art. I was no longer amused.
We trudged to the restaurant commenting about the gorgeous lake the entire time.
“Griffin, you’re not going to see something like that where we live.” I told him, hoping that the view would be seared into his mind.
The air was fresh, the pines smelled crisp, we heard a loon – my heart soared and for just a few minutes I was walking on air, all pain forgotten in the beauty of the moment.
We finally reached the restaurant – which was closed. Seriously, the only restaurant in that neck of the woods and it was closed. We both sighed. The prospect of a dinner composed of granola bars and dried raw cow loomed in our future.
But then Griffin remembered that Treats and Treasures (which was just down the road) carried a small selection of frozen food. Off we went back the way we had come to try our luck at that very fine establishment.
Sure enough they had a frozen food section (what a clever boy I have.) After purchasing a pizza, some BBQ chicken tenders, bottles of cold drinks, and a quarter pound of Maple nut fudge (when in northern NH…) we were on our way back to the cabin to cook our dinner.
“Why did you buy fudge? I’ve never liked fudge!” Griffin told me when he saw my purchase.
“It’s emergency food,” I replied. “Now help me get this food in the oven.”
While the food cooked, I walked outside to the spot down the road that had cell coverage. I called Marc and told him that we were alive. Yes it was harder than we thought. No we did not need a ride home. When I returned to the cabin our food was ready.
Because of the chronic Lyme in our family, it’s important to eat a diet with as little inflammatory food as possible. I try to avoid white flour, sugar, dairy and anything processed. However, that night feasting on those TGIF chicken tenders (meatballs) swimming in sticky BBQ sauce and following them up with slices of thick pizza covered in vegetables, cheese, and an assortment of processed meats – we had never had a finer supper. Licking fingers and gathering crumbs to pop in our mouths we soon finished our entire meal.
After cleaning up we sat down in the living area.
I had rehearsed what I was going to say. Griffin, I was going to start, this trip was meant to be fun. It wasn’t meant to injure you or me. The plan for our next day was to cover 27 miles, an amount that before we had started this journey seemed doable but after one day, I had come to realize was clearly impossible.
“We could stop it right here.” I told him. “Nothing is worth damaging your body.”
“How about if instead we break up tomorrow into 3 days?” he countered.
It would turn our trip from 14 days into 16, but as he or I wouldn’t be yet starting our school semesters, I listened to his plan amazed that after a day like day he was willing to continue.
He pulled down maps and looked at our route. “We could walk to Stewartstown tomorrow and then to Colebrook the next day. By then we should be in shape and we can resume our regular schedule.”
“How far away is Stewartstown,” I asked warming up to his plan. “And more importantly how far away is a hotel in Stewartstown?”
“According to Goggle it’s 16.5 miles and the nearest hotel is in Vermont.”
“16.5 miles?!!” I squeaked. “But 15 almost killed us today!”
“Yeah but we’re past the mountains” he said in an effort to calm me. “We’ll be coming across stores and restaurants along the way and then the next day we’d only have to walk 10 miles. It’ll be easy. ”
His logic was sound. I was ready to try if he was.
“Okay, I’ll go ahead and make adjustments to the schedule. Tomorrow we’ll walk 16 miles to Stewartstown, but for tonight do you want 2 Motrin or 3?
(Here’s some information on why we took this trip.)
Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com
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