We decided (relatively last minute, as we tend to do) that this was going to be the weekend. This meant that Saturday was dedicated to preparations. We made a final trip to R.E.I. for last minute supplies, though it was hard to imagine we needed anything as backpacking paraphenalia has been trickling into our house constantly for the last 6 months. (Mr. LIOLI shares with his father a certain tendency towards being a serial hobbiest and insisting that one must have all the proper gear for each said hobby. Where do we put all these accoutrements, you ask? An excellent question.) Anyway, we did still need a few things: food (freeze-dried in little pouches...weird, but cool!), hiking boots for me, Dr. Bonner's all-purpose soap, an extra water bottle, etc. Barely avoiding the post-game Red-Sox T-riders, we headed home to pack up.
We headed out directly after church the next morning and I must admit, I wan't the most pleasant travel companion. I wasn't excited at all and in fact was a bit nervous. Carrying everything I needed to survive on my back just didn't sound like that good of an idea. (Sidenote: I should be honest. When all was said and done my pack weighed in at only 20 lbs. My beloved's came in at just under 50. So I should rephrase that last sentence to read: "Carrying some of the stuff I needed to survive on my back and relying on Mr. LIOLI to carry the rest didn't sound like that good of an idea.") Anyway, I didn't think it was going to be any fun, and had visions (which I described to Mr. LIOLI in detail in the car the whole way there) of all the suffering and misery that would probably occur. What if my pack was too heavy? What if I got a blister? What if we got attacked by a bear? Or worse an axe-murdered (I've been watching too many Criminal Mind reruns, I can tell.)? Or what if we got lost? Mr. L had responses for everything unfortunately. He doesn't seem to have forgotten anything from his boyscouting days, though that was more than a decade ago.
Anyway, (and I can admit this because I am self-actualized and trained in self-reflection), as it turned out, I was wrong. It was totally awesome. The hike was amazing, through varied and beautiful terrain with plenty of ups and downs but not too much climbing. We saw redwood forests and birches and maples, meadows and beaver ponds and swamps and old rock walls, huge Indian caves and abandoned settler's dwellings. And it was actually really fun to be packing things in and out: like we were really surviving! (I should also admit that all the gadgets which I had mercilessly mocked for months--what the hell do you need THAT for--did really contribute in a huge way to the lightness of our packs the pleasantness of the journey.) Roxy the wonderdog had a great time and was a good travel companion. She even carried her own gear in a dog backpack (Thanks, Crandall!).
And that was it. Survival. Everything we needed on our backs. Pretty cool stuff if you ask me. I'm now totally up for round 2 this weekend. I'll let you know if I can convince Mr. L. (to whom I owe great thanks for again convincing me that new things can be fun!). Maybe I'll even call Mom to ask for some advice. :)