November 8, 2016
Election Day, and I believe that the Radical Forgiveness tools could make a difference for people in the aftermath! Colin shared a blogpost about that very topic. My mind spins with the idea of having a FB group to field stories and share the tools.
The idea is followed immediately with doubts and beliefs! “I don’t have time! I don’t have internet! I shouldn’t charge for membership!”
What can I do? What could go wrong? Why not do this?
Check with the coaches group. Maybe teaming up with others would be good.
Fulfillment Partnership Journey
November 1, 2016
I noticed this morning that John asked, “How can I make your morning special?” My response was, “talk with me.”
I ventured into expressing my ever-present imagination of having a life partner who shares my fulfillment. I spoke about that and John listened without balking.
What I noticed is that as soon as I had shared a bit, I balked! I thought, “whoops! There I go again, talking too much, laying out my impossibly demanding, far reaching, complicated, outlandish life-purpose thing that no one else could ever live into! Why can’t I just settle for being loved and cared for?” And then I apologized.
“Sorry I say too much.”
And then, John met me. He said, “Well, I support you in living that purpose, really being it and attracting that partner, and maybe it can be me.”
I noticed that I really don’t believe that I can HAVE my fulfillment partner. I pull back in embellishing the vision, receiving it, believing that I “already have it” as a manifestation in the implicate order.
I project on John NOT having it, that he has to shy away, stop talking, balking. And then I act as if unfulfillment is my reality.
I now know that I have a CHOICE about what to project!
Step. Step. Step.
Later. We took a walk in a beautiful canyon for a few hours, talking the whole time! Well, we stayed in conversation, but what I got was that the words “life purpose” stirs John’ s unworthiness story!
October 6, 2016
There are things I want to do and ways to be that I have been putting off. Although it’s easiest to say that it’s because I “can’t do those things from within my current partnership.” I put that in quotes because I know that those words are spoken by my victimself settling for her unfulfilling Old Story!
Here are some of what’s missing:
Singing/Playing Satori/Regular Touch-for-health/Using Radical Forgiveness tools every day to expand into love/Visiting friends and family/Fulfilling Forgivenesswalks/Walking slowly and observing Nature/Painting…..
I’m open to the possibility of being fully expressive as myself, claiming my unique expressions in worthiness.
I want to have a relationship founded on talking freely about relating! My partner and I regularly listen, talk, share, and explore our patterns, habits, and old stories of relating. We create New Stories and help each other live into them. We eagerly learn
October 5, 2016
It seems urgent to me that my mother has an explicit plan for her life’s concluding chapter. She’s 89 and says, “this body just needs to die. I miss Jim, and just feel ready to be finished.”
She doesn’t want to talk about how to do that, or what quality of life she wants, or the many variations of those conversations that seem important to ME.
So, it occurs to me that maybe these are questions for ME to explore for myself!
What’s important to me about rounding out my life- physically, emotionally, spiritually. What is this even called? Who is discussing what it looks like to live fully, in good health and spirit and then leave one’s body in completion? I don’t mean suicide, I mean at one’s time of completion!
September 20, 2016
“Where am I? How do these covers work?” I wondered as I tugged at the thick comforter on the hotel bed. “Maybe this is another world from the trail, after all!”
Yesterday morning, light rain pattered on the tarp a couple of feet above my head. I pulled the down bag around me and snuggled back to sleep. “The rain was predicted to start around 3 a.m. so I have time to sleep some more before our final dawn walk to the border.”
A few minutes later John stirred, wondering what time it was. “6:05! The sky is getting light. Time to get up!” We would have slept in, delaying our arrival at the B&B at trail’s end where a shower and laundry beckoned.
It was indeed raining, although lightly, so we went ahead and fixed our morning oatmeal, pouring on the last two tablespoons of our maple syrup, and half of the remaining olive oil. “Save some for the tuna sandwiches!” It was time to finish our last section on this walk, judging by our diminishing food supply. Four dates, four ginger snaps, one pack of tuna, one small serving of mashed potatoes, five cloves of garlic, and a couple of tablespoons of olive oil were all that was left in the food bag.
Breaking camp took the usual 20 minutes, and we were off with 4.4 miles to walk to the end of the Long Trail. I savored the details of the forest and even the guesswork of maneuvering each step. Too soon, I knew, we’d be out of the woods.
A short two hours later we touched the “end of the trail” sign and emerged from the woods to the cleared corridor that signified the U.S.-Canada border. We chuckled at the frolicking blue jay as it wove back and forth over the imaginary blockade only we humans perceived. The bird made no meaning of the surveillance apparatus poised secretively a hundred yards up the corridor, its glass eye aimed at the celebratory obelisk of our accomplishment. We posed in our victory stance and snapped our photos.
Not quite ready to leave, we spread out our cooking gear and prepared the very last food items – oil roasted garlic, tuna, and basil on exactly four slices of sourdough bread – two full slices and two heels. It was, of course, the best repast ever! Oh yes, that small serving of mashed potatoes topped off the celebration. Now, we truly had no more food.
As we were finishing up, two other hikers arrived. We had met Mike and Austin the night before last at Hazens Camp where six of us had shared the four-bunk cabin during the rainy night.
“Congratulations on finishing thw whole trail!” Mike said, as he took our monument photo. I always like it when someone will take our team shots, instead of relying on my awkward selfies! “What’s next?”
“We’re going into North Troy to stay at the B&B and get a ride to Burlington tomorrow morning – at 3:30.”
“We’re going to Burlington now! We could give you a ride there today!”
And that’s why I’m in a Ramada Inn in Watertown, NY, waking up feeling disoriented! We rented a red Toyota Corolla at the Burlington airport and drove through the Adirondacks, part way to Buffalo where our van is parked at my sister’s place. Just like that, without even getting a shower or doing laundry!
Maybe the trail and the city are two worlds. I’m grateful to be blessed with both!
September 18, 2016
We stopped at 6:35 p.m. when we reached the Shooting Star Camp, the northernmost shelter on the Long Trail, just 4.4 miles from the northern terminus. We had talked about pushing on in the dark to the end, but agreed that the risk and slowness of night walking in this rocky terrain outweighed the appeal of getting to the finish line tonight.
This was a fun day! At last I have become neutral about whether the path goes up or down, whether there are rocks, boulders, roots, water, or mud, whether I’m maneuvering down ribbed ledges of mossy rock or gingerly stepping on slippery ladders of roots.
The anticipated rain storm filled the night with pelting rain and wind as we slept quiet and dry in the Hazens Camp cabin. The other four hikers sharing the four bunks with us were congenial, bedding down with us by 9 p.m., quiet except for the one snorer.
By 7 a.m. the rain had stopped, so we left at the tolerably late time of 7:30. We had cooked and eaten our oatmeal breakfast which we usually eat on the trail, so that half hour of rest time was eliminated.
Although the rain was predicted to return about 2 this afternoon, the sky cleared instead. We walked all day with no more rain, and in warmer temperatures than expected as well. The cold, wet day we had dreaded failed to materialize!
At 11:09 a.m. we reached the road that marked 11.9 miles to the end of the trail! A few minutes after 1 p.m. we reached Jay Peak, the mountain we had been anticipating for the past two weeks from way down at Killington Peak, 150 miles ago! Jay would be our last high peak, at 3985 ft. What a treat awaited us there, as the ski lodge was open, including the grill! We feasted on a pulled pork sandwich and refillable coffee, bonus food to supplement what we were carrying! What a strange contrast it was to our slow climb of the mountain to meet people in flipflops who had come up the mountain in the tram!
By the time we were ready to leave the warm lodge, the clouds were clearing and we got a good view of our next mountains – Doll Peak and Carlton. 10.1 miles to go!
Those last 4 hours walking off the trail from 10 miles left to 4.4 melted away, even though there were plenty of obstacles, which we now humorously call “tricks,” meeting each one with gradings of difficulty, like judges in an obstacle course. The biggest change in the trail today was that last night’s rain had turned a lot of the trail into a stream! Sometimes we literally were ascending thin waterfalls as water naturally found the rocky trail to be the easiest drainage down the mountain.
I was curious when John seemed focused on taking a snack break on Doll Peak, an hour or so after we had left the Jay Peak Lodge. “Let’s get something from your bag!” he said. I opened my food bag and found a PayDay candy bar – something I had not put there! “Wow! Where did this come from?” John had surprised me with an extra snack, a welcome treat for this hungry hiker! I laughed at how easy it is to light me up – with food!
Those extra calories lightened my steps for the rest of our “gymnastics” on the trail to this, our last night out on the trail.
What a summer we’ve had, walking from June 3rd to July 6th from Rockfish Gap, VA to Delaware Water Gap, PA, from August 9 to September 5 from Delaware Water Gap to Killington, VT, and now from September 6 to September 19 from Killington to Canada. I haven’t added up the miles, but it’s close to 1,000! I guess I got what I want, didn’t I – a hiking lifestyle!
I love reading your comments! The comments function on this website is not working, though, so please send me your responses, questions, and stories by email to me at:
September 17, 2016
9 a.m. 26 miles to go!
Yesterday evening, we reached our goal, the Spruce Peak Shelter. It was a nice shelter, but it was only 5:00 p.m.! There were still two hours of light. We kept going.
First, through Devil’s Gulch, a short scramble through huge craggy boulders covered with ferns. I was glad we were exploring that as an evening activity rather than first thing in the morning.
We kept walking. The trouble was that the trail skirted the side of a mountain, so no flat spots for tenting were available. “There’s one” would reveal lumps and bumps on closer inspection. Another quarter mile. Now, the trail headed straight up the mountain on narrow stone steps, up and up to Ritterbush Overlook. Now, we’d gone another full mile and darkness was soon to arrive. The trail leveled out. Yay! A decent spot appeared, but John had already moved on. Keep going. Another hundred yards, and John says, “Here’s a spot.” It was a very good spot – flat, with two trees for tying the tarp, and off the trail down an old road about twenty feet. Yes! It was a good spot! We had walked 17.3 miles too! 30.1 miles from Canada!
We almost slept in this morning in our comfy spot. We were surprised it was already 5:55 when we noticed that the sky was getting light. We packed up quickly and got on the trail by 6:30, an impressive start!
And that got us up to our 9 a.m. milemarker – just 26 miles to go from Mt. Belvidere.
Mt. Belvidere provided a view of Jay Peak, our last high mountain. We’re making good time. Yesterday, the trail was mild – we even walked rather than constantly scrambling on rocks!
We were enjoying our morning oatmeal when another hiker appeared at the Mt. Belvidere summit. As we talked, I rejoiced in another happy synchronicity of the trail – getting just what I need at just the right time from a surprising source! I had asked Suzie, the other hiker, “How did you get to the trail to start?” She answered, “The owner of North Troy Inn works in Burlington, so he gives guests a ride. I flew into the airport, rode to North Troy with him and stayed overnight.”
Bingo! That’s a perfect answer for our quandary about how to get away from the trail. Later, we called and made a reservation to spend Monday at the Inn. Our ride to Burlington, where we can get to Enterprise car rental, will leave Tuesday morning – at 3:30 a.m.!
Now, it’s 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, and we chose a bunk in the Hazen’s Notch Canp shelter to be out of the predicted rain storm. Even though staying in shelters, usually crowded and noisy, isn’t our favorite sleeping choice, we like the idea of a dry place.
We’re in a really good position to finish the Long Trail with just 17.6 miles to go! We can do it all tomorrow – if the weather and terrain are congenial. Or, we can go 12 or 13 miles tomorrow, then finish up on Monday. Either way, we have a room at North Troy Inn where we can clean up and begin our transition back to urban life!
September 15, 2016
Johnson, VT 5:22 p.m.
We are finishing up a fantastically successful resupply stop in Johnson. The last two days have been challenging for me. That rain we missed on Mt. Mansfield slowed us down – and made me colder than I like to be.
There’s an existential question in that for me about my limits between comfort and survival, speed and observation. I’m still exploring that, and will keep it til later.
For now, we’re heading out again – without an overnight in town, proving my mettle in laundryfree living, for the last 50 miles on the Long Trail.
I may not be posting much, but you can be sure that I’ll be climbing rocks and maneuvering mud puddles on our way to Journey’s End, the name of the northernmost shelter on this trail.
Then, we’ll create a way to get to Burlington, VT to rent a car to drive to Buffalo, NY where we left our van. We’re happy to receive a pickup or shuttle idea if you know of someone in northern Vermont who would like to pick us up near Jay, Vermont, probably next Tuesday, September 20 morning.
(Txt me at 678-938-2075) if you have a contact for me!)
Here we go!
By the way, we slept last night in the warming hut on Mt. Madonna, 3900 ft elevation. Gratitude fills me for the ski slope folks for leaving it open for hikers! Beautiful sunrise this morning!
September 12, 2016
“Hiker Friends, we need a hiker friend, to pick us up at this trailhead and take us to town.”
That’s my new thought when I have to hitch a ride into town for resupply. I accept that most of the drivers passing us by don’t know anything about the Long Trail and why backpackers would be hitching a ride. I pass by all the self-hating things they could be thinking about me. They are not who I am signalling with my thumb.
I’m signalling one of the Hiker Friends, who know that long distance hikers need a ride into town every few days.
And here they are! A car pulls over. The driver hops out and coaxes the dog to the back, puts up the back seat. His wife smooths a cover over the seat, apologizing for the dog hair. Our backpacks go quickly into the back stowage and we’re off.
“I hiked the Long Trail a few years ago,” he says. Yep. He gets us! He’s our Hiker Friend. Waterbury, here we come!
September 13, 2016
It’9 p.m. and I’m standing on the highest point of Vermont. No, really! I climbed Mt. Mansfield, the highpoint of Vermont, at night!
We reached the first peak, The Forehead, at 6:21, just as the sun was setting. The almost full moon was up. Happily, we had made it that far in daylight. Some of those obstacles had challenged my agility greatly. Leaning ladders, a slot called Eye of the Needle, an oblong and rounded boulder squeeze, things like that.
The moon lit up the slope for the last half-mile easy slab walk up the final knob called The Chin. We kept our headlamps off and picked our way over the gray rocks. I kept thinking, “This should be scary and forbidding, but it’s actually very thrilling and not even so hard! What a neat thing to do!”
My heart sings tonight, gratitude filling me as I live into my New Story that my amazing body climbs mountains whenever I want!
P.S. Our reason for summiting Mansfield last night was just validated! 8:25 a.m. the predicted rain just started! Ooh! It’s pouring! Instead of fretting a dangerous traverse of the mountain, we are dry and warm in Taft Lodge, on the north side of the mountain. Yay!
I am in awe of John’s attention to the fine points of strategic planning. Yesterday, even though the sky was perfectly clear, he heard a clue in another hiker’s conversation about “today” being a good day. He checked the weather forecast and saw 100% chance of rain for this morning.
At 1 p.m. he proposed that we go ahead o er the mountain instead of stopping at dusk at the shelter on the south side. That would give us 7 more miles to walk, including the 3-mile summit traverse after dark. We did it!