I should be asleep already. It’s nearing 12am, and I broke camp at 5:30 this morning.
I’d like to sleep, but in reality, I’m wide awake and I just want to make miles.
I’m staying at my aunt and cousin’s home in Greenwood Lake tonight. I originally intended to pull off trail for a single day, and start hiking again tomorrow. My cousin really wants me to stay for dinner tomorrow, and I think my aunt would like to have me for a week. I feel the compromise is to night hike out tomorrow evening.
Towards the end of Pennsylvania I started hiking with a new group of people. Among them, Tater Tot and I seem to jive pretty well. I’d really like to hike with her to the CT border, where she will then flip up to Maine to finish her last section.
If I leave Saturday morning, instead of Friday night, I feel like my chances of keeping up with her will wane significantly. If I never hike with her again I’ll be seriously fucking bummed.
Additionally, the situation at my aunt’s is strange. My cousin has two long term guests, overstaying their welcome by some eight months. It’s not my house, nor are they my guests, but I’m a bit… Charged by the situation.
I hate seeing kind people taken advantage of by obvious degenerates. When those kind people are my family, it’s difficult to stay quiet. The oft referred to “fuck heads” have a son with them, and he seems like a good kid. I understand the conflict my cousin faces on this point. Too many children miss so much opportunity in the face of domestic instability.
Honest intention and right speech are brutally difficult, but necessary. I am the last person who can make judgements on another’s lack of action in this regard. Still, they need to get the fuck out of here. My cousin is more than willing to put the kid up for free, provided he keeps his grades up.
When asked what boys should be taught, the laconic Spartan king Agesilaus II replied:
“That which they will use when men.”
Maintaining some level of academic performance in return for room and board may seem harsh to some. In reality, it is a great kindness to be taught this virtue early on. As Jordan Peterson often points out, would you rather have a safe child, or a strong one?
The latter would be my choice. I feel for the kid though. It’s obvious from their adulthood, that his parents were never themselves parented thus. Much to the detriment of their progeny.
A common thread among thru hikers my age, is their lack of interest in having kids. I am among them. There are enough children in the world already, many with shit parents. It’s a better use of my time to mentor those kids, than have my own. To some degree, everything I do is with that aim in mind. One day I’ll teach the lessons from my endeavors.
Well, this has turned into an oddly self-serving narrative all of the sudden.
My mental high horse should be taken with a grain of salt. In all reality, I’m just up late musing about a beautiful woman. I hope I’ll get to hike with her tomorrow.