The weather report says it's supposed to rain. Mud needs new shoes and I need new socks and a desert shirt to keep the sun off my chest. So we leave the almost-town of Mountainair. Walking out on the highway past barking dogs and buildings for sale, I think about the culture we're walking through. Specifically, the dogs. They ride in the back of pickup trucks, on a good day. They bark at us from behind a fence, if they're lucky. But many of them are tied up or in pens. Confined to a solitary life with little to no stimulation (I can only assume). No hugs, no baths, no games of fetch. I think about Sprout, sleeping on a couch in Redmond. So well-fed and surrounded by love. What a good life he has.
Walking past the lonely barking dogs, like when I see a truck full of pigs on the interstate all crammed on top of each other being hauled off to slaughter, I can only offer them an apology on behalf of all human kind, and move on with my day.
Two hitches, a train and bus ride later, we're in REI of Albuquerque. We buy the things we need and nothing more - a blessing of having to carry everything up buy on your back. Then search through grocery store full of processed foods to find something, anything for dinner. We leave with tortillas and juice, grateful for our supply of extra dehydrated meals back at the hotel.
Tomorrow, we go back into the desert.
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Other Neat Things:
My friends Harpo and Groucho are some bad-ass thru-hiking vegans. Read their blog here.
Idyllwild is a favorite trail town for many PCT hikers. This online magazine has featured a few hikers and also keeps up with mountain-town happenings.
Future Dad is thru-hiking the Pacific Crest, Te Aurora and Appalachian Trails back-to-back-to-back, all in one year! He's also a really awesome story teller. Read his stories here.