Dearest, darlingest family and popsicles,
Here we are again.
Me, writing to you in my journal and eating cinnamon toast.
You, doing heaven knows what, but reading this.
Hallo! I am sitting on a carpet, instead of outside in the snow that is melting off the eaves. I realize this often happens, me writing you from inside. I am sorry. I will endeavor to be better in the future. But this time, it’s because I’ve been kidnapped by northern Mainers.
There I was, walking down the IAT like any ole hiker person. There it was: a low-pressure system with some nice snowfall and winds from the north like we been thinking about for months. I don’t know how many of you have been waltzing through wee bits of snow like that before, but all I could think as I pushed my face to the winds and trudged into the snowbits that were smacking my eyeballs (ouch) was… well… Mostly for the first 6 miles in the morning I was all, “yay this ain’t so bad for a wee morning walk.”
Then (the IAT section I was on is in sight of roads) I saw they were letting schoolchildren out early, and the wind was all against my face, and I was all:
Ok, self. The main reason you’re still out is because 1) You live in a tent, and 2) You know there’s a restaurant in two miles that lets pitiful hikers like you camp in the back of it, that’s got great hot foods. And I bet they’ll let you sleep inside, because you are going to go in and eat foods and not feel like walking into the winds for the rest of the afternoon.
Then, I walked some more, occasionally being happy that my head and feet and everything were warm. This is what you get, Sail.
I eventually walked into the restaurant (this was a couple days ago), and lo and behold! There was a human who said, “Yo, you looking for a place to spend the night inside, my parents have got a room upstairs. Come home with us.” …Now here I am. Lazing about. Eating cinnamon toasts, spending time with these good people, and taking cough medicines. They have informed me that I must tell people:
This is what happens when you walk over Katahdin and come into northern Maine. Folks hear you coughing and bring you in out of the storm, and tell you they won’t let you out of their house until that cough is settled; then they’ll kick me out, if I fit through the door. (They may have to roll me.)*
*Really the word they used was, “kidnap,” but I hope you are all all right if I have put it into my own words.
So. Rumor in the wind is that they have just closed the border crossing in Houlton today, completely, on both the Canadian and US sides; which is something folks here say has not happened before (to this extent). I am several days out from the IAT crossing in Fort Fairfield. For now I am just sitting, being warm, reading “Rocket Men” (the epic story of the first men on the moon), and writing to you.
Take care of yourselves, and each other.