I’ve found myself oddly unworried by the journey and the remaining preparations. The two days in San Diego have been the perfect lead in to the hike tomorrow. There has been a continuous stream of people arriving and leaving, all with different stories, yet all here for the same reason. Without any marshalling we come together to talk, we drift apart to do our chores. Our first trail angel is wonderful – helping, advising, accommodating. We have all made progress in the short time we’ve been here.
All of the dehydrated food I ordered, plus rice and porridge oats, has been decanted and divided into trail meals that I can rehydrate as I walk. In the process I’ve filled an entire rucksack with discarded packaging which strikes me as a lot for a relatively small amount of food. I’ve got beef jerky and cheese for protein and fat, and tortillas to stop it getting on my fingers (or possibly to stop the muck from my fingers getting on the food). Everyone says that hikers always bring too much food, and I feel like I haven’t got enough so perhaps that means I have just the right amount. Or perhaps it just means I’ll have too much like everyone else. Either way, in the first few days there are a couple of places to top up so I can’t bring myself to worry about it.
The first encounter with the USPS has also been pretty hassle-free. Two boxes mailed up trail to Warner Springs (extra food) and Big Bear Lake (everything else) where I plan to take a day out (a “zero” day) to do laundry, calorie-up, and rest. The kit from home has been supplemented with some trekking poles and a camera case and some bits from my first hiker box. Everything is just now waiting for Wednesday morning.
Only one minor problem remains, which is a hole in my foot from standing on the dreaded “stingles” (carpet gripper rod). It’s not like I’ve got thousands of miles to walk or anything.