Day 3 – Stewartstown to Colebrook cont.
What could I possibly do for our waitress? In a case like this, it’s not money or donations that are needed, it’s access to competent Lyme related medical help.
Of which there is very little in our state, let alone any, it appeared, in the north country.
While diet, exercise, and relaxation would certainly help, our waitress was not going to get better unless someone treated the cause of her problems. Period.
Although I couldn’t help her situation, I could let her know that she wasn’t crazy. There is a moment when all chronic Lyme patients, having gone to doctor after doctor, are ecstatic to finally hear they have Lyme disease.
The monster has been named and now that it has a name, it can be fought.
You’re not crazy after all.
“I’ll tell others about you,” I said, when she put the bill on our table. “Know that you’re not alone.”
After paying the bill (and finally needing to use the rest room after all that water) Griffin and I gathered up our packs and headed to our motel, just one mile, one loop around the neighborhood away.
To get to the motel – located alongside a golf course (a golf course!) – we had to walk down side streets lined with houses. Both Griffin and I felt like we had stepped into another world. Since we had left the Canadian border, this was the most densely populated area we’d been in. Houses were painted in several colors, lawns manicured, flower gardens maintained, children’s toys strewn in the front yards, and there were several cars in each driveway.
An observation I would have missed had I only come from the south, but one impossible to not see having now come from the north. The land where people made due with what they had.
The people in the houses we were walking by had enough money to pay for the “Like to haves” along with the “Need to haves” in life.
I thought about what we carried in our backpacks – everything we thought we’d need for our 2 week walk. How we were looking forward to dumping all the extras that were just adding weight to our backs.
I thought about my house at home. Filled with piles of “stuff” once loved and now too filled with memories to discard. Just sitting in corners.
And I thought about what we had seen up north. Decorations made from deer antlers. Being happy (unbelievably happy) with a frozen chicken tender dinner that I would have snubbed my nose at when I was home.
Being thankful for what we had.
I realized that our walk, which had started out as a personal challenge and which had morphed into a 2 person crusade on Lyme awareness, was also teaching us lessons on the distribution of wealth how people used wealth.
It became evident as we walked to the golf course (again a golf course?) that the more you had, the more you had.
It also became crystal clear to me that the more you used, the less you needed.
Hmmm. This felt like an idea that needed much more chewing on.
But for now we had gotten to the motel. Griffin waited outside while I walked in to register.
Registering in a motel would be a simple matter if it weren’t for the little “Car information” area on the slip. I left it blank and when I returned the slip, thinking I hadn’t seen the little boxes, the woman at the front desk asked about our car.
“We’ve walked.” I said.
“You walked?” she repeated.
By now we had gotten the attention of some men who were waiting to rent a cart so they could play a round of golf.
I told the woman at the counter about our walk. That my son and I had started at the Canadian border and were hoping to make it down to the Massachusetts border.
“It was a hot one for a walk,” one of the men said to me.
“Yes,” I answered him, thinking about the episode when our water rations ran low and that he had no idea how hot it had been. “It was.”
I signed the motel registration (after the woman had written “Walked” over the car information area) and received our key. We would be in the room right around the corner from this building.
As I was leaving the office I heard a man talking to the woman.
“No, we’ll take two golf carts,” he said. “It would be too crowded if we all went in one.”
Griffin and I rested for a few hours and then got up to walk back into town in order to find a restaurant for dinner. Even though we had had lunch a few hours before, we knew that if we didn’t go out and get dinner, there would be no food until the following morning.
We had to go out and gather our food while we could.
We took inventory of our bodies. The tops of our thighs and the back of our calves hurt and our feet hurt.
What didn’t occur to us then was that our backs weren’t in that list of complaints.
After 3 days on the road carrying our packs, our bodies were starting to build up the muscle we needed to continue.
And while our legs and feet were sore (very sore) we had enough left in the tank to walk the .6 mile to the restaurant. Our bodies were getting stronger.
At the restaurant Griffin had chicken with hand cut chips and I had a Reuben dog.
“This is the best Reuben dog I’ve ever had,” I mumbled, my mouth filled with food.
(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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