Especially when the weather stays wonderfully cooperative. I read recently this has something to do with El Nino or La Nina or Global Warming or Al Gore's Nobel Prize or God having to pay too much attention to Britney Spears at the moment. Whatever- the next week looks like the same as the last two- sunny, dry, and comfortable temps for hiking. I'll take it. And with my much-heralded entrance into South Carolina tomorrow, I will have officially outhiked the worst of the winter weather.
People have often commented on how my hike was timed perfectly with the weather- yes, that was by design. Still, I had no right whatsoever to have encountered only about five rainy days on the whole hike to this point. There was one in Virginia, one in Maryland, one in Pennsylvania, and two in Maine. And that's been it. Sometimes you just luck out.
I also lucked out with the timing of a Teach for America interview which I took care of today in Charlotte, for those of you curious about what the future might hold for yours truly. As it was, the timing could not have been better: I needed an off day anyway, and today was the day I would have been in Charlotte, even had it not been for the interview. I was also fortunate to be able to meet a friend, Rebecca Wintsch for dinner tonight, get a cheap but nice hotel room within walking distance of the interview, and find a Fedex spot where I can ship my suit, good shoes, and most recently completed lecture course on Voltaire and the Triumph of the Enlightenment back home tomorrow. But then again, I'm probably the first person in history not only to have hiked through North Carolina with a pin-striped suit in his backpack. (For those who are scratching their heads, I picked it up in New Jersey during a brief stay at home two days before Thanksgiving via rental car. And yes, I marked a spot on the ground with my foot at the Enterprise outfit in Danville, VA where I stood before and after renting the car to maintain the legitimacy of the hike)
North Carolina went by in just one week, but it was fun, especially the warm welcome I received in Salisbury, including a photo on the front page of the paper, a complimentary dinner, and $60 worth of impromptu cash donations. Let's see what South Carolina holds- already a Couch Surf or two, a meeting with a Fisher House representative and sunny weather with highs in the low 70's are on the docket. Nothing could be finer indeed.