“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson
I never thought myself as an “outdoorsy type”; (I don’t like bugs and detest some more than others), yet a lot of the things I like to do seem to be outside activities.
One day I may thru-hike the entire Appalachian Trail, if my body doesn’t fall apart first. Until then, I’m going to hike as much of it as possible in sections. There’s something to be said for the freedom from the hustle and bustle of society and stripping away the frivolous and only concerning yourself with the basic necessities. The Army taught me the basics of being self-sustaining; now I’m taking it a step further.
Many of my friends (and a vast majority of society) don’t expect a black woman to enjoy traipsing through the forest, getting sweaty and dirty, not showering, and climbing mountains for no reason at all. So far, I’ve summitted the highest peak in Virginia, stayed at the highest shelter on the Appalachian Trail, mingled amongst herds of wild ponies, and viewed numerous breathtaking vistas. You know why? Because. They were THERE. And getting there under my own power is much more satisfying than anything else.
I’m a fiercely independent and a “sometimes swim against the mainstream” 24-year Army veteran who gets into things that don’t fit my “stereotype” (you know what that means *wink*)- solo backpacking being just one of them. A good friend once told me “You don’t have hobbies, you have obsessions”. Well, if you’re going to do something, don’t go about it half-assed.
GO. ALL. OUT.