We've been walking slowly through this Western North Carolina landscape, so we've been seeing a lot. We've run out of water then found nice people that gave us water and for our mules too. Then those same people gave us a big shopping bag full of snacks. Both the countryside and the kind people have been so impressive.
It seems, when mule rambling, one minute you can be with out water and the next it's provided. One moment there is nowhere to camp for the night, and the next you are set up for the following two nights. Today we are dry but I've heard a hurricane might be on its way. The forecast is for a lot of rain.
This journey is like a wave, a rumbling sea where faith sees you from the trough to the crest of the wave
Take yesterday for example. The day started out waking up from a camp we made when the day ended before we had found a camp. We took the spot beneath us where the day ran out into night. It was a lovely camp in a hay field next to rows of Christmas trees. The trouble was we were out of water for us and the mules to drink. Lucky the hay field offered a good heavy dew on long lush grass to appease the mules. We were a bit thirsty. No water to cook with so we ate a can of fish between the two of us and went to bed. In the morning we just packed up and left without breakfast.
We walked for a mile or so continuing along the dirt lane we had been on the day before when we were following the path of a running relay race that we knew had come from the town of Todd where we were heading. The race had passed on the night before.
What we had not expected was to find with the race's passing a locked gate at the end of our lane where the dirt was hitting the paved road ahead. We tried to wedge a saddled mule around the edge of it. We picked the wrong mule. We tried the next saddled mule, also a no. The one, Polly who carried the pack and was twice as wide as the other two combined, went. Then my mule Dusty went and finally when it looked like Brick was going to be left behind the gate she went too.
We got out on to the paved road and continued our progress towards Todd. I couldn't stop thinking about getting a drink of water and some breakfast. The sun was heating up on the paved road and after several hours of walking along on mule back I was getting a little light headed. That's when the nice ladies in a house on the road to Todd gave us the water and the unsolicited snacks. These kinds of human gems give one so much faith in humanity.
On we went after a breakfast of water and snacks towards Todd. What would be in Todd? It was beautiful rural country along the New River. Finally we arrived in Todd. Who would have thought to find in Todd a Bakery of wondrous treats and more kind people? So yeh, there's a hurricane supposedly coming along but this mule travel is a wave and if you go down in a trough you come back up again. Today I'm well hydrated, I've got plenty of fine baked goods in my belly from Todd Mercantile, my cloths are dry and there's an offer for places to stay for the next two nights so all is well. I'm on the crest of the wave and mentally ready for the next plunge and rise.