Sunday, July 11
I am a martial artist and through a lifetime of dedication and training I have learned many lessons about life and dealing with obstacles. For this journey, one of my goals is to be like water. Water can be hard and strong, soft and fluid, invisible and light. Water is the universal solvent. All obstacles can be gotten over, under or around in some way. This day was to put me the test.
While I slept snugly and smugly under the arbor the previous night it rained. In addition, the lawn sprinklers activated and between the two my cart received a serious drenching. Unfortunately, my notebook was ruined - ink gel blotted out by rain water! Did I get upset? No, instead I tried to "go with the flow," thinking perhaps I could remember most of what it had contained and rewrite it. Unfortunately, this is not what put me to the test. I had also lost my copied directions for walking to Bliss, Idaho. "Hmmm, okay, be like water, lets get around this." I decided to trust Map Quest via my cell phone for direction to Mountain Home as an alternative. This was the mistake. I now know that Map Quest pays no attention to available water or food, populated or not, paved road or cowpath. If you type in a" walking route" - check it with a real map for it will literally direct you down dirt and gravel roads.
Following my cell phone's directions - this paved road became a dirt road which turned into a path which concluded in a cow field. I had opened and closed two cattle gates before finally coming to a dead end at a barbed wire fence. I could see the other alternative and to get there I had to unload my cart completely, lift it over the fence, reload it and continue down a gopher studded dirt road in the heat of the day. To make a long story shorter let it suffice that this led me ( Yes, according to Map Quest I was right on target) to a 15 mile up and down gravel road through the Idaho National Guard training area! Several people stopped and talked thinking it was unusual that someone was pulling a cart through the wilds of Idaho in the heat of the day as I was doing. Not to worry - plenty of food and water. I ended this miserable day sleeping in a training area for those being deployed to Iraq. I kid you not and have included some pictures.
Never trust Map Quest without checking with a regular map too.
Live and learn - there's always tomorrow.