I woke up early, jittery with excitement. I was home! I had a day to revel in the normalcy of it all.
I put on a cotton (!) shirt of Boomrang’s (all of my clothing is still in storage), my long johns, a sweatshirt and jean vest of my own, and a too large pair of Boomerang’s Doc Martins. I was ready to hit the streets of the biggest city I have seen in five months.
We went to Biscuit Bitch, our favorite cheap and fast breakfast place, and ate and drank real espresso. I started vibrating from the caffeine and excitement.
I have been worried this whole time about coming home and how frightening it will be. But my fears were unjustified. I love cities just as much as I love the outdoors!
I looked at people, sucking up the beautiful clothes and usualness of all of Seattle heading to work. I reveled in the flasks of coffee and the bags of packed lunches. I couldn’t stop ogling these people, who didn’t smell and had real schedules.
Later we headed up to REI where I bought some ridiculously pink compression things to go on my shins. I prayed they would help my pain.
Then it was off to watch a movie in bed (it would have been Netflix, but we don’t have Internet yet!), and then I got redressed to go see friends. I took a ride with Houston, who I tried to cram a month of happenings into 30 minutes. Then it was Chipotle with a few of my favorite people from OSAT, the group of people who drug me up Rainier. They wowed me with their travels and climbs from the long season I missed while on trail, and I felt so blessed to have friends like them — the kind that always are adventuring, the kind that keep me on this long and twisting path.
One of them, Peter, gave me a lift back home and recounted how he became one of the porters on a climb of Rainier that helped scientists do further research of the caves atop the great mountain. We both were giddy in our worship of their cause and his good luck!
When I finally got home I had time for another movie with Felix and Boomerang. When it finished, I got into the tub to soak. Boomerang came in to keep me company and I had a long ugly cry.
All the stress from the hike, the months apart, the impending finish, and the great pain in my stupid leg came up and out. I turned into a prune I cried for so long. But I came out feeling better.